Welcome to GreenBiz, BusinessWeek.com’s latest blog. Our aim here is to explore the business side of energy, the environment and climate change. They’re fast changing issues, and highly divisive—perfect stuff for a blog.
Consider the top spokesmen on each side of this debate. If you believe Al Gore, global warming and the need to radically change how we make and use energy are the biggest challenge of our time. If you side with the Bush Administration and Senator James Inhofe (R-Okl), such worries are mostly hot air. With the issue so polarized what is business to do? Where are the threats, the opportunities, the potential pitfalls?
It’s already clear that the debate will stay in the headlines for years to come, with new twists emerging almost everyday. Lately the focus is on energy policy: How will advances in conventional and new energy technologies transform the future? Which are pie in the sky, which will really work, and how do we encourage the right ones? How many gains can come from improving efficiency, or changing lifestyles? We’ll drop in on everything from new approaches to solar power to techniques for cutting electricity use in the home.
Looming over this whole discussion is the threat of climate change. The latest scientific findings seem to all point in one direction: bigger temperature rise than expected, more species imperiled, Arctic ice disappearing faster than predicted. We’ll try to fit upcoming reports into the big mass of what’s already known. We’ll chronicle the rapidly evolving climate policy debate, as businesses increasingly call on Washington to issue mandatory curbs on greenhouse gas emission. We’ll look at key players shaping this debate and what they’re up to.
We also hope to bring you a bit closer to the issues by opening up our notebooks and brining you into the process of reporting that we engage every day — talking to scientists, CEOs, think tank wonks and policy makers. We’ll link to and help decrypt science publications, other blogs, key articles, and expert sources so you can judge the raw material guiding the debate on these issues. And of course we’ll keep a regular eye on daily events, aiming to inform and spark debate about developments as they hit the news.
It’s inevitable: BusinessWeek stories on climate change and energy have always triggered sacks jammed with (or, lately, screens full of) reader feedback. We hope that readers will carry that passion over onto this blog. We’ll write regularly, but expect you to join the conversation too. This is meant to be a dialog with you the reader, as well—your discoveries, expertise and opinions, we hope, will enrich the blog. And let us know what you think.
Adam & John