Green Touch: Shrinking the Internet's Footprint (by a lot)

As the threat of climate change continues to loom, and our energy consumption increasingly examined, the world is starting to pull up their socks.

Individuals around the world are building a collective conscience to live more efficiently. We idle less, recycle more, buy better light bulbs, and produce less waste. And as important as these personal changes are, we are also seeing entire industries make larger-scale changes that are having unprecedented effects on how the world consumes energy.

Companies in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry are launching numerous initiatives to achieve more sustainable development. ICT usage is expected to expand rapidly over the coming decade, especially in developing countries. If nothing is done, the ICT contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions is projected to nearly double by 2020.

Enter the Green Touch Initiative.

"Green Touch is a consortium of leading ICT academic and non-governmental research experts dedicated to fundamentally transforming communications and data networks, including the Internet, and significantly reducing the carbon footprint of ICT devices, platforms, and networks."

Launched by Alcatel Lucent Bell Labs, the Consortium is working to address the current and considerable inefficiencies of the ICT sector, examine insights drawn from fundamental theories of communication, and subsequently develop the technology needed for a new generation of high capacity, super low-energy networks.

But Green Touch isn't just looking to change a little. They've got a vision to change a LOT. By 2015, the Consortium has a goal to reduce energy consumption within the ICT sector by a factor of 1000. In other words, Green Touch tells us this: In five years, it will be possible for the global ICT industry to operate for three years, using the amount of energy we currently use to power it for one day.

For this vision to become a reality, leading experts from around the world are collaborating within Green Touch to deliver innovative new ideas, products, and solutions to the market, contributing to the inevitable reinvention of today's communication networks.

To learn more about the ICT carbon footprint, and how Green Touch is working right now to make a change, visit their website (designed and developed by BSL).

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