Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A conversation with staff, a really nice local site, and a disappointment

Two weeks ago, I posted that I dropped a "green computing" thought bomb on my staff (the computing folk at the City of Kirkland). Well, we did our brainstorming on it today and came up with a bunch of good ideas. Unplugging chargers (did you know they're called wall moles? I didn't), turning of monitors, more incentives not to print, information scrolling on the TV about energy conservation...

More on those as we implement them. Best of all, nearly everyone was engaged. A lot of the ideas will take some change in business practice. For example, we run all kinds of programs at night so we have people leave their computers on so we can sneak virus pattern file upgrades into them at 3:00 AM when no one is looking. Can we do that differently? It would save a lot of power. And I could turn my computer at home off - I only use the desktop once or twice a week, but I leave it on all the time. So many bad little habits.

I found a very cool local site today - http://www.worldchanging.com. They have at least a few new articles every day. If you are reading this, read that, too.

The disappointment? The King County budget came out today (King County is the home of Seattle and various other cities, like where I live and where I work). Here is a quote from the Seattle Times article: "The 2007 budget would cut back another initiative Sims had suggested in May: hiring three or four people for a "strike force" that would plan local responses to climate change. The global-warming office would now have a staff of one." The entire article, Sims' '07 budget proposal trims child-health project, by Keith Ervin, can be found online. It would have been nice to have our tax money paying for four people to work exclusively on climate change. I mean hey, we're paying for a bunch of people to fight a war that probably isn't good for climate.

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