Ep317: Keeping Up with the Fight Against Climate Change with 18y/o Project Firefly Co-Founder Valkyrie Holmes
June 27, 2022
Since 2019, fire seasons have gotten three and a half months longer. This means that firefighters and various volunteer groups experience over twice as much risk. Bigger fires can engulf a football field size area within a SECOND! With what little technology they have at their disposal, the job almost seems impossible.
Valkyrie has lived in Vegas her entire life and is no stranger to the wildfires that constantly ravage California. Being in the valley gives her a front-seat view of these events’ aftermath. This makes Project Firefly very personal for her and co-founder Jesse Pound. They aim to modernize the way wildfires are fought – minimizing the contact of responders to extremely dangerous areas by use of vortex cannons and drones, made possible through fluid dynamics.
Having had deep interests in science and technology, she joined multiple hackathons locally and abroad. While researching, her partner came across papers about an earlier study on the project – fighting wildfires with sound caught their attention. They built on it and entered the #beapirate Challenge by Moonshot Pirates, a global movement of future-oriented talents & young changemakers. In between their pitches during this period, partner Jesse Pound was traveling through Vancouver and saw a wildfire develop right before her eyes and had to evacuate. They took it as a validation that they are on the right path.
After winning the earlier challenge, the team went on to win a $100,000 fellowship from Seven Seven Six, a foundation that awards grants to young people who want to build a better future through climate technology. Aside from these grants, they need support spreading information about the urgency of this problem and directing more attention to 776 Foundation.
This week’s giveaway is an opportunity to chat with Valkyrie about Project Firefly. She will answer all the burning questions you may have about this initiative, climate change, and everything in between!