Green Internet and Cyber-infrastructure Overview
Governments around the world are wrestling with the challenge of how to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The current preferred approaches are to impose carbon taxes and implement various forms of cap and trade. However another approach to help reduce carbon emission is to “reward” those directly who reduce their carbon footprint and complement their existing lifestyle. One possible reward system is to provide homeowners with free fiber to the home or free wireless products and other electronic services such as ebooks and eMovies if they deploy micro renewable energy sources for their ICT equipment and use eVehicles for energy transportation. Not only does the consumer benefit, but this business model also provides new revenue opportunities for small businesses, network operators, and eCommerce application providers.
Linking renewable energy with the Internet using eVehicles and dynamic charging where vehicle's batteries are charged as it travels along the road, may provide for a whole new "energy Internet" infrastructure for linking small distributed renewable energy sources to users. For more details please see:
How North American suburban sprawl could be the answer to global warning: http://goo.gl/UDz37
Free High Speed Internet to the Home: http://goo.gl/wGjVG
High level architecture of Building Zero Carbon Networks: http://goo.gl/juWdH
Monday, June 29, 2009
TelephonyOnline - USA
Telecom and IT companies are well-positioned to tap the potentially $700-billion market for lowering carbon dioxide emissions, ...
Data centers are running out of space and power
"Data Center Overload"
Cisco, EMC Team with MIT to Launch $100M Green Data Center
The city of Holyoke, with a ready source of cheap, relatively clean hydroelectic power, will host a new, energy efficient data center that will bring innovation and jobs to the city.
The data center will be managed and funded by the four main partners in the facility: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cisco Systems, the University of Massachusetts and EMC.
While the project is just at the launch of a 120-day planning phase, there are big hopes for the facility. "The potential for breakthrough technologies and research is enormous, and both the center and collaboration will undoubtedly serve to lift up the City of Holyoke and regional economies throughout Western Massachusetts," governor Deval Patrick said.
In addition to being the hub of a community-redevelopment project, the facility, if and when it is finished, will be a high-performance computing environment that will help expand the research and development capabitilities of the companies and schools that work there.
And hydroelectric power has long been a draw for big tech projects like the Holyoke facility, although rarely in as urban a setting as Holyoke -- the city is 10 miles outside Springfield, Mass., and is just 90 miles from Boston. Google's "Project 02," a code name for its massive data center in The Dalles, Ore., was sited in that location because of the cheap and abundant energy from a nearby hydroelectric plant. And last year, Microsoft was reportedly looking to site a data center near Quincy, Wash., and its nearby hydroelectric facility.
Thursday, June 4, 2009
THE GREAT ECONOMIC REVOLUTIONS IN HISTORY: THE CONVERGENCE OF NEW ENERGY AND COMMUNICATIONS REGIMES
The great pivotal economic changes in world history have occurred when new energy regimes converge with new communication regimes. When that convergence happens, society is restructured in wholly new ways. In the early modern era, the coming together of coal powered steam technology and the print press gave birth to the first industrial revolution. It would have been impossible to organize the dramatic increase in the pace, speed, flow, density, and connectivity of economic activity made possible by the coal fired steam engine using the older codex and oral forms of communication. In the late nineteenth century and throughout the first two thirds of the twentieth century, first generation electrical forms of communication—the telegraph, telephone, radio, television, electric typewriters, calculators, etc.—converged with the introduction of oil and the internal combustion engine, becoming the communications command and control mechanism for organizing and marketing the second industrial revolution.
A great communications revolution occurred in the 1990’s. Second generation electrical forms of communication—personal computers, the internet, the World Wide Web, and wireless communication technologies—connected the central nervous system of more than a billion people on Earth at the speed of light. And, although the new software and communication revolutions have begun to increase productivity in every industry, their true potential is yet to be fully realized. That potential lies in their convergence with renewable energy, partially stored in the form of hydrogen, to create the first “distributed” energy regimes.
The same design principles and smart technologies that made possible the internet, and vast distributed global communication networks, will be used to reconfigure the world’s power grids so that people can produce renewable energy and share it peer-to-peer, just like they now produce and share information, creating a new, decentralized form of energy use. We need to envision a future in which millions of individual players can collect, produce and store locally generated renewable energy in their homes, offices, factories, and vehicles, and share their power generation with each other across a Europe-wide intelligent intergrid. (Hydrogen is a universal storage medium for intermittent renewable energies; just as digital is a universal storage mechanism for text, audio, video, data and other forms of media)
The question is often asked as to whether renewable energy, in the long run, can provide enough power to run a national or global economy? Just as second generation information systems grid technologies allow businesses to connect thousands of desktop computers, creating far more distributed computing power than even the most powerful centralized computers that exist, millions of local producers of renewable energy, using hydrogen storage and intelligent utility networks, can potentially produce far more distributed power than the older centralized forms of energy – oil, coal, natural gas and nuclear – that we currently rely on.
The creation of a renewable energy regime, partially stored in the form of hydrogen, and distributed via smart intergrids, opens the door to a Third Industrial Revolution and should have as powerful an economic multiplier effect in the 21st century as the convergence of mass print technology with coal and steam power technology in the 19th century, and the coming together of electrical forms of communication with oil and the internal combustion engine in the 20th century.
European industry has the scientific, technological, and financial know-how to spearhead the shift to renewable energies, a hydrogen economy, and an intelligent power grid and, by so doing, lead the world into a new economic era. Europe’s world class automotive industry, chemical industry, engineering industry, construction industry, software, computer and communication industries, and banking and insurance industries, give it a leg up in the race to the Third Industrial Revolution.
By fostering renewable energies, a hydrogen infrastructure, and a continent-wide intelligent intergrid, the European Union can help create a sustainable economic development plan for its 500 million citizens in the first half of the 21st century.
The Third Industrial Revolution will require a wholesale reconfiguration of the transport, construction, and electricity sectors, creating new goods and services, spawning new businesses, and providing millions of new job.
Being first to market will position the European Union as a leader in the Third Industrial Revolution, giving it the commercial edge in the export of green technological know-how and equipment around the world. Producing a new generation of renewable energy technologies, manufacturing portable and stationary fuel cells, reinventing the automobile, transforming Europe’s millions of buildings into power plants to produce renewable energy for internal consumption or distribution back to the grid, reconfiguring the electrical power grid as a intelligent utility network, as well as producing all of the accompanying technologies, goods and services that make up a high-tech Third Industrial Revolution economy, will have an economic multiplier effect that stretches well toward the mid decades of the 21st century.
The coming together of distributed communication technologies and distributed renewable energies via an open access, intelligent power grid, represents “power to the people”. For a younger generation that’s growing up in a less hierarchical and more networked world, the ability to produce and share their own energy, like they produce and share their own information, in an open access intergrid, will seem both natural and commonplace.
The key challenge that every nation needs to address is where they want their country to be in ten years from now: In the sunset energies and industries of the second industrial revolution or the sunrise energies and industries of the Third Industrial Revolution. The Third Industrial Revolution is the end-game that takes the world out of the old carbon and uranium-based energies and into a non-polluting, sustainable future for the human race.
Jeremy Rifkin is president of The Foundation on Economic Trends in Washington, DC. and teaches at the Wharton School’s Executive Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Rifkin is currently advising the Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša, during his presidency of the European Union (January to July 2008). Mr. Rifkin also served as an adviser to Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Jose Socrates of Portugal during their respective European Council Presidencies, on issues related to the economy, climate change, and energy security. He currently advises the European Commission, the European Parliament, and several EU heads of state, including Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero of Spain and Prime Minister Romano Prodi of Italy. Mr. Rifkin is the author of seventeen books on environmental, energy and economic related issues including The Hydrogen Economy: The Creation of the World Wide Energy Web and the Redistribution of Power on Earth (Tarcher/Penguin).
Monday, June 1, 2009
Technologies that Reduce Carbon Emissions and Help to Slow the Rate Global Warming
June 1, 2009 (OTTAWA, Ontario)–CANARIE today announced a $3 million Call for Proposals to fuel the development of advanced computing and networking technologies that reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions from the world’s Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) infrastructure (including computer hardware, software and networks), and enable collaboration on promising green IT solutions that will help slow the rate of global warming.
The CANARIE Green IT Pilot Program will help Canadian innovators to capitalize on emerging opportunities in Green ICT—a global market that, according to Insight Research Corporation, is expected to reach over US $600 billion by 2013. Specifically, it aims to facilitate national and international collaborative research projects that demonstrate the
• technical feasibility and usability of relocating computers and other cyber infrastructure to zero-carbon data centers that are connected by optical networks, and powered solely by renewable energy sources such as the sun or the wind, and
• business case for providing carbon offsets (and/or equivalent services) to university researchers and IT personnel who reduce their carbon footprint by relocating computers and instrumentation to zero-carbon data centers
CANARIE expects to award up to $2 million for major zero-carbon data center pilot projects; and about $1 million for the development of business cases and smaller projects. The outcomes of this pilot project could influence the development of ‘Canadian-designed’ green ICT approaches, products and services that could be marketed around the world. As countries such as the United States, Britain, Singapore and Australia consider injecting billions of dollars into green and broadband strategies, these initiatives could help put Canada ‘in the global game’, stimulating business development opportunities and opening new markets for Canadian companies.
“This Call for Proposals aims to capitalize on Canada’s expertise in ICT and the development and use of advanced networks to accelerate the adoption of low-carbon ICT infrastructure and management strategies,” said Guy Bujold, President and CEO of CANARIE. “It will enable innovators to collaborate on the development and validation of novel green technologies, assess the feasibility of zero-carbon data centres, and propose cost-effective and environmentally sound IT strategies that could benefit companies in many sectors. This reinforces CANARIE’s commitment to partner with industry, academia and government to address global sustainability challenges such as climate change.”
“This Call for Proposals underscores CANARIE’s critical role as a change agent in the ICT landscape”, said Brian Fry, Vice-President of Sales and Marketing for RackForce, a leader green datacenters based in Kelowna, BC. “It will provide enormous lift for companies such as RackForce that aim to develop, implement and promote the use of green data centers to reduce our carbon footprint. For example, winning project teams could influence the development of new standards, discover new ways to optimize zero-carbon data centers, and help to stimulate increased uptake of green ICT approaches. This represents a win for industry–and for society.”
The deadline for initial proposals is June 29, 2009 at 5PM EDT, with full applications to be submitted by September 10, 2009 at 5PM EDT. Selected proposals will be announced in October 2009. For additional information on this program, please visit: http://www.canarie.ca/funding/greenit/call_for_proposals.html
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