This Week in Sustainability – Big Data, Energy Efficiency and Climate Change Policy

| Josh Henretig

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This week, CIO compiled a list of the Top 12 Big Data Stories of 2012, explaining how Big Data emerged into the news cycle with attention to how organizations can use their data assets as a competitive advantage. Big Data is a trend expected to continue to grow and develop in 2013. In addition, GreenBiz published an article discussing the relationship among data, sustainability, IT, and smart buildings. Using big data analytics to increase energy and operational efficiency is a growing trend in businesses. An optimized smart building will decrease energy needs, which in turn, decreases the environmental footprint and bottom-line. You can see an interview of Rob Bernard, Microsoft’s Chief Environmental Strategist on GreenBiz about how the company uses big data to increase efficiencies on its campus.

In other news, The Hill reported that President Obama has recently identified climate change as one of his top priorities during his second term in office. The President has recently discussed potential executive action to curb emissions through new vehicle fuel efficiency standards and air-pollution limits for new coal-fired power plants, but this statement showed more commitment than before. The Hill also reported on a new plan for Congress to have a weekly “open forum” on climate change. Senator Barbara Boxer, Chairwoman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, explained the “climate change clearinghouse” will focus on working with the Obama administration and informing members of the latest science. With such momentum in the nation’s capital, the prospect of real climate change legislation in 2013 is becoming more real.

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