I come from a Social Media background. I use blogs, Social Networks, Microblogs, Photo Sharing sites, Video Sharing sites, Livecasting apps, Social bookmarking sites etc. everyday. I generate a constant stream of updates about things happening in my life which can be followed via RSS or on my Friendfeed page (a feed aggregator) or on the individual sites.
Cool. Interesting enough I hear you say. So what? Well, lets just park that for a second.
Carbon accounting is rapidly coming down the line. Already we are seeing companies like BT and Verizon requiring lower carbon footprints from their suppliers. This is because carbon accounting will take supply chains into account.
Carbon accounting will be incredibly granular and will attempt to take everything into account in the life-cycle of goods and services. This will include electrical power usage, road mileage and air miles alongside expenses and financial returns.
To get buy-in from staff, reporting total power and energy usage will have to be made as simple as possible so that it doesn’t interfere with the natural flow of people’s work.
This is where lifestreaming applications come in. Encourage the people in your organisation to use applications like blogs, Twitter, Flickr, Dopplr, et al. Then you can capture that output and route it through the carbon accounting software and ta da! carbon usage information accounted for.
Obviously it won’t be as easy as that, but if your employees are using Twitter, say, set up your company’s carbon account software with a Twitter account. Then instruct staff on how to message the software with what you are doing at any point in time i.e. “@bt-carbon-accounts – putting on the kettle for a cup of coffee” or “@ibm-carbon-accounts – hot today, setting the aircon to 19C”. This would also be especially useful for capturing the carbon footprint of people working from home.
IBM’s master inventor Andy Stanford-Clark has already done some work in this area. His house has a Twitter account and regularly sends updates like:
the phone is ringing (mobile)
electricity meter reading: 32100 KWH
outside lights turned off
outside lights turned on
etc. to Twitter automatically!
Will carbon accounting software and its requirement for constant inputs from all levels of business bring lifestreaming applications into the Enterprise 2.0 fold?