IT'S been Noosa's turn to give a big green welcome to the SolarTuk Expedition driven by the sun at a top speed of 50km/h.
Zero Emissions Noosa (ZEN), Sandy Bolton and Deputy Mayor Frank Wilkie were on hand Monday on board a cavalcade of electric bikes to escort the university expedition and their modified tuk tuk down Hastings St to Noosa Woods.
The RACV Noosa's Nissan Leaf electric car was also part of the welcome "wagons” before the expedition visited the Sunshine Beach High School to meet with the Year 7 students who have been studying solar power.
ZEN president Vivien Griffin said this three-wheel wonder "has the capacity to help change the world”.
"ZEN is delighted to be welcoming the amazing solar-powered SolarTuk team to Noosa.
"We love the passion and innovation of the SolarTuk team and the RMIT students.”
"The tuk-tuk is ubiquitous throughout Asia and is currently noisy and polluting. This group of innovators clearly understand the need to reduce global transport emissions.”
Cr Wilkie said since November 24 "this inspiring team has travelled some 1900km from Melbourne” with "what must have been a very brisk detour up Mt Kosciuszko”.
He said this would show Noosa and others the way to a cleaner, smarter and more sustainable future "and we applaud you for that” and "your sense of adventure”.
Ms Bolton said the team's quest was exciting with its tangible efforts to bring this technology to the world.
"I know you guys will keep working on it so you can get longer distances,” she said.
Expedition leader Julian O'Shea said it had been a joy to travel across the country powered by just the "sun and a generosity of spirit and that's absolutely been the case in Noosa”.
He said the idea for the journey that will go global after this epic Aussie stint, hit in Thailand while driving tuk tuks and having fun.
"The question is why can't we do that here in Australia and if we were do it, how can we do it in a sustainable and in a low carbon way.”
Team member Jack Clarke said the solar converted tuk tuk was designed and built by 11 RMIT students supervised by himself and Julian.
"She will do 300 to 350 kilometres on a single charge of the battery, which we think by accident makes her the longest range electric vehicle in the country - so cop that Tesla,” he said.