Why You Should Study Envision: Charlotte As A Clue To Your Own Future

Shared on August 08, 2012 written by Jesse Berst via Jesse Berst

Originally announced by former president Bill Clinton in 2010 at the Clinton Global Initiative, Envision:Charlotte has as its goal to dramatically improve the sustainability of downtown Charlotte as an engine for economic growth. The North Carolina city is sometimes called "energy capital USA" because the nearby region is home to more than 175 energy companies, employing more than 13,000 people.

The initiative is notable for several reasons:

Smart Electric power

Last year, the initiative worked on the electric side. Duke Energy will gather and aggregate energy usage data from about 70 participating buildings in Charlotte.

Building tenants will see the nearly real-time commercial energy consumption data for the community and suggested actions they can take to reduce their personal energy usage in the office.

Smart Water

Just last month, Envision:Charlotte extended into a second model program called Smart Water Now. I discussed this latest step with Mike Brander, vice president of global energy and utilities for Verizon Wireless. He says the goal is to reduce water consumption in the downtown area by 20% over five years.

Brander thinks water does not get its fair share of attention when it comes to its contribution to true sustainability. (I agree.) He says Verizon is trying to get ahead of the curve by moving some winning concepts from the electricity sector to the water sector.

Itron (via its SmartSynch subsidiary) is providing the communications modules along with other network infrastructure. The system will use Verizon's 4G LTE network to aggregate the data and send it back to kiosks where users can get a near-real-time look at their consumption.

Like its sister program for electricity, Smart Water Now will aggregate information into a single number representing the total uptown usage, then drive awareness and behavior change to reduce consumption.

Keywords: Smart Grids, Smart City Utilities

Citation: Jesse Berst. Why You Should Study Envision: Charlotte As A Clue To Your Own Future. In via Jesse Berst. Retrieved August 08, 2012, from http://www.smartgridnews.com/artman/publish/Technologies_Smart_Water/Why-you-should-study-Envision-Charlotte-as-a-clue-to-your-own-future-5024.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Smartgridnewscom+%28SmartGridNews.com%29.

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