Energy And Environment

Energy & Environment by chrisvickAmong the most daunting challenges facing humanity is the need to wean the world of its dangerous addiction to fossil fuels and build a new green energy economy that can sustain human civilization for centuries to come. The problem is that at the current pace of development we are still decades away from true mass-market deployment of any clean energy solutions, let alone all of them. We need a new model of reindustrialization for an age of networked intelligence—one built on a platform of openness that mobilizes not just large utility companies, but a whole ecosystem of small-scale generators and household producers, software developers and business leaders. Treating the energy grid like an open platform would, for example, allow software developers to build applications to help you conserve energy the same way developers build apps for the iPhone. A straightforward application could include a service that analyzes a household’s electricity usage data, identifies inefficient appliances or practices in the home, and offers tips on how to reduce energy. The technology needed for smart grids and green power production is largely here, and with the right mix of bottom-up collaborative action and inspired leadership, we can make it happen.