"I'd put my money on solar energy ... I hope we don't have to wait til oil and coal run out before we tackle that." ~ Thomas Edison, in conversa- tion with Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone, March 1931.
Leading the world? Now tasked with making Solar cheaper than Coal, Google's newest initiative is working with leading engineers and energy experts to construct the world's biggest solar thermal field and explore business opportunities in numerous arenas of clean energy.
In 2008, Google will spend tens of millions researching scalable clean energy investments, with plans to unleash hundreds of millions of dollars into "breakthrough renewable energy projects" that show potential for positive financial returns.
Seize the Day
"Our goal is to produce one gigawatt of renewable energy capacity that is cheaper than coal. We are optimistic this can be done in years, not decades," says Larry Page, co-founder and President of Products. (One gigawatt can power a city the size of San Francisco.) "We expect this would be a good business for us as well."
Google has already reaped benefits ($) from its clean and green energy efficiency projects. Committed to "making its business environmentally sustainable," the company's list of concrete improvements, includes:
Implementation of cutting-edge energy efficiency technologies throughout its global data centers
Installation of 1.6 Megawatts of photo voltaic panels atop its corporate headquarters
Acceleration of plug-in vehicle technology through the "RechargeIT" initiative
Co-formation of the "Climate Savers Computing Initiative," advocating energy-efficient computing equipment
Advocacy of policies that encourage renewable energy development, via Google.org
Carbon neutrality in 2007
The Good News
Clean Energy is the ticket. It's 2 basic components: energy efficiency and clean, renewable fuel stocks - are a viable, market ready, business strategy. Globally innovative, globally competitive companies such as Google, GE, Intel, Virgin, Wal-mart, and Goldman Sachs - are not just "greening up" their image, they are seeing what has to be done and they are taking advantage of the opportunities. Just a few years ago, most people believed "green" energy didn't work and climate change wasn't real. Today, the time to get involved has arrived, and the rational is not just fiscal, it's sustainable.
Links, Links, Links
More on Google & Similar Projects, below.
*Special thanks to "Pat" for assistance with this letter.
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