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Thoughts on Obama and McCain’s Environmental Policy

Post by Jennifer Greeson Dunn, Senior Manager, Public RelationsWatching last night’s debate, I was struck by the utter lack of creativity and vision when both candidates answered the question about “climate control” (or climate change as John McCain corrected Bob Scheiffer). Obama and McCain both offered flat, uninspired answers that focused largely on 20th century means of energy production and environmental conservation. Build 45 new nuclear power plants right away? Really? And where is that money going to come from? The laundry list of solar, wind, geothermal, etc. Nothing new there. I would love to see one of the candidates focus on an energy-independance partnership between industry and government, the kind that got us to the moon 40-something years ago. Let’s use U.S. history of innovation and technological prowess to develop solutions that reduce environmental impact and help us better monitor, manage and reduce energy consumption. Call it the Green-hattan project, or whatever.Many in industry and academia are already thinking this way. The”Smart 2020 ” report released by The Climate Group and GeSI earlier this year highlighted the opportunity to be gained in many sectors of the economy by using IT to manage environmental concerns. Timely enough, a new study out today by McKinsey reinforces that notion. At Cisco we are focusing on this idea and how we can use our expertise in networking technology to manage our own GHG emissions reduction goal (25% over 4 years!) and to help our customers to do the same. Solutions like Cisco Connected Real Estate and our partnership with six international cities on Connected Urban Development are just two examples of putting that vision into reality.I hope whomever is our next President will think about these options and look at the energy-independence issue a little more creatively than we heard discussed last night.

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