"Each person must live their lives as a model for others" - Rosa Parks
I'm not generally a big fan of HUGE corporations, but at the same time I think you need to give credit where credit is due. Last week, Google announced that they are going to take responsibility for their impact and pour "hundreds of millions" of dollars into renewable energy research specifically in the fields of solar and wind power. Their long term goal is to produce 1 gigawatt of power from renewable energy that will sell at prices below coal generated power. It's an astonishing goal and if successful, would be enough power to power all of San Francisco. Google apparently keeps their energy use private (and much is already solar generated) but rumours put it right around "a buttload of power".
So why is this so important? For starters, we all know how big Google is, so for an industry leader like this to head in this direction shows the rest of the sheep out there where they should be heading as well (politicians take note!). Also, if successful, which I suspect they will be, the end run of this is that solar prices will drop significantly making it much more affordable to the average joe. It's really, in my opinion, a space shot kind of moment when you consider that the largest solar array presently in existence is 20 Megawatts (a gigawatt is 1000 megawatts so you can see how ambitious this really is).
Seeing as our elected "leaders" seem to be unable to come up with a comprehensive energy plan that calls for renewable energy and an end to fossil fuel addiction, I'm glad corporations like Google are there to show them that it needs to be done, can be done, and will be done.
It's about time.
You can send Google a hail and hearty Huzzahhh at email@example.com. Let em know you care and you appreciate the fact that they are in the game.
Herein, with any luck, you will find common sense practices, interesting tidbits, party stopping factoids, and generally amusing anecdotes (at least to the writer anyway) on our quest to achieve sustainability.