Cisco Spearheads Urban Green IT Initiative

A coalition of global urban planning and IT leaders is preparing a set of best practices for environmental protection that can be used by cities around the world.

SAN FRANCISCO-While the IT world itself has been working for several years to reduce its carbon footprint and to cut back greenhouse gas emissions, other business sectors-such as auto manufacturing, oil and gasoline, electrical power and many others-have had their own incentives to do likewise.
Now it looks like these disparate sectors of the world economy are starting to come together to get serious about curtailing global warming and repairing the already damaged environment. And Cisco Systems is one of the leaders in this effort.
A group of about 150 international representatives, energy officials and IT executives met Feb. 20 at the new, environmentally-friendly federal building here on Seventh Street. The meeting was the first convocation of an 18-month-old coalition called the Connected Urban Development, spearheaded on the IT side by Cisco and its charismatic chairman, John Chambers.
The CUD initiative aims to create repeatable citywide communications infrastructures that show how network connectivity can reduce carbon emissions for cities, countries and individuals. In its first phase, CUD consists of partnerships with three pilot cities-San Francisco, Amsterdam, and Seoul-in order to apply information and communications technology to promote innovative practices for reducing CO2.
For example, all three cities have already installed, or plan to install, a next-generation broadband Internet infrastructure. All want to lessen traffic congestion, improve the use of mass transit, and upgrade the environmental aspects of all of their commercial and residential buildings, through using less electricity, for example, or by using better insulation.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor of Features & Analysis at eWEEK, responsible in large part for the publication's coverage areas. In his 12 years and more than 3,900 stories at eWEEK, he...