This week's indicator is 90 percent, which is the percentage of wireless cloud electricity consumption that goes to network infrastructure. This finding, reported in a new study from the Centre for Energy-Efﬁcient Telecommunications, goes against stakeholder reports and stories in popular media, which often ding data centers for their energy footprints. According to the new report, this emphasis has been misplaced. “Wireless networks are the biggest threat to the sustainability of cloud services, not data centers,” the authors conclude.
This week's indicator is 67 billion kilowatthours, which is the difference between summer and winter residential electricity demand, according to the Energy Information Agency. This "peak" is more than twice as large as the seasonal peaks for commercial customers, and nearly four times as large for industrial customers. These findings show the critical need for demand response programs targeted at residential customers, a space where vendors are beginning to offer more sophisticated solutions.
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, we've seen a renewed focus in the media on climate change. As it so often does, the conversation points to technology as a lever for both mitigation and adaptation.
This blog was co-authored by Yakov Berenshteyn and Scott Browne
Utilities are under growing pressure from regulators, NGOs, and the public to improve their environmental performance. While residential customer concerns often make the biggest headlines, utilities’ most impactful relationships (and transactions) are often with suppliers and commercial and industrial (C&I) customers, meaning utilities can’t leave them on the sidelines when developing business growth and environmental strategies.
GE announced the next phase of its $200 million open innovation challenge at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) earlier this month. The GE technology featured at the show was all about how the smart homes of the future will make, manage, and use power. The “Powering Your Home” Challenge, which begins today, January 18, will complement GE’s existing innovation and investment strategy and seek the best ideas from around the world for harnessing and managing energy at home.
Until recently, commercial buildings were largely left out of the spotlight – relegated to the realm of traditional utility incentive programs, standard energy retrofits, T5 and T8 lighting, etc. (Don’t get me wrong – there remains a big need for this kind of traditional retrofit, but commercial buildings have been neglected by many smart grid and behavior-based programs).
That omission is starting to change. In September, Duke Energy, Cisco, the City of Charlotte, and a number of major commercial building owners in Uptown Charlotte including Bank of America and Wells Fargo (who combined, represent over 12 million square feet of commercial floor space) announced Envision: Charlotte, a collaborative plan to make Charlotte the most sustainable urban core in the country.