When victory or a major step in the right direction is in reach, focus is critical. Take, for instance, last summer. Gas prices were sky-high. Oil was approaching $150 a barrel. You couldn’t turn on the TV or surf the internet without some story about conservation, plug-in hybrids, wind farms, or the like. Bookstores created ‘green’ sections. Momentum around environmental sustainability was beginning to build. But then, gas prices started to drop, and old habits began to resurface. We lost our focus. Skip ahead to the present, and some of the most forward-looking projects are now in jeopardy. Just last week, James Kanter from the New York Times blogged about falling prices for permits to emit carbon dioxide and governments putting green-focused efforts on hold. According to Kanter, the economy is to blame. But views like that are limited—or at the very least, blurred. Investment in green can actually open up new economies. As the Seattle Times recently reported, President Obama’s proposed stimulus package includes more than $25 billion for energy-efficiency projects. And, according to the White House website, the Obama administration intends to invest $150 billion over the next 10 years in climate friendly energy and deployment initiatives. They believe such an investment can create five million new jobs and stimulate the economy. But let’s get more granular and zero in on what businesses can do today to weather the economic turbulence. In the past, companies have had to choose between doing what’s right for the environment and what’s right for the company. That choice is now irrelevant. With smart technologies, such as what Cisco is introducing at Networkers Barcelona, organizations can approach their IT infrastructure in more strategic, environmentally sustainable ways that can significantly reduce their operating expenses. We’re talking about green intelligence here—a shift from always on to always available; greater impact on bottom line, less impact on the planet. Add to that the ability to better see and control your energy and you begin to see the potential for even greater successes beyond your network—economically and environmentally. It just takes focus and a change from doing things the same old way. If you’d like to learn more about what Cisco is doing with green technology, visit our environmental sustainability website. Or, click here to learn more about what we’re announcing at Networkers Barcelona.