It remains to be seen whether the multinational initiative called Green Touch, announced today by Alcatel Lucent's Bell Labs, can succeed in rolling back or ameliorating one of the negative and destructive aspects of human communications activity.
Secondly there is the extensive political endorsement of the Green Touch initiative. These governments, including those of the United States, the United Kingdom, Portugal and South Korea, really want this to succeed.
And there are issues that wait to be addressed and challenges inherent within Green Touch's charter.
The initial goal of the consortium is to produce a reference design of network demonstrating a 1,000 times improvement in energy efficiency, within five years. Unfortunately that improvement could be eclipsed by a more than 1000 times expansion in demand over the next five years.
There is also little or no mention of money at this launch. And the investment will tend to be plentiful if a financial return can be seen in to be coming with this putative energy-efficient network. Of course as we go past the point of peak-oil and energy prices continue to rise there will be a financial return as well as societal imperative.
And it has to be admitted that electronics and communications industries are, to a degree, playing catch-up, in this area. There has been another Green organization that has been continually laying criticism at electronics companies' doors over sustainability and recyclability.
So as well as kudos to Green Touch it is kudos to Green Peace.
Related links and articles:
Dell, Apple: stop your ecobickering and get to work
U.S. awards $47 million for R&D on IT energy savings
Mobile networks must be reworked for energy efficiency, organization demands