By dd on Sep 21, 2009
We haven't made a ton of noise about openeco.org in the last couple of quarters, but that was probably a mistake.
One of the most frequent questions I get as Sun's Chief Sustainability Officer is how other organizations can get started on GHG reductions. The first step is to calculate your current emissions, and to get a feel for what parts of your activities (business or otherwise) are causing those emissions. This leads to one of two follow-on questions: 1) how hard can that be? or 2) that sounds really hard - I bet I need to hire a high-priced consultant.
The combined answer is that it is not trivial, but for most organizations you don't need a consultant. The math involved is not hard, but finding the right equations and coefficients isn't easy. Also, to track and measure over time you need to keep lots of data around, which can get cumbersome.
This is why we created openeco.org. It is a free, online tool that lets organizations calculate and track their emissions over time. We needed a tool for ourselves, but found that our solution was applicable to schools, churches, companies and other organizations. It knows about different locations and sources of emissions, and follows the standard, accepted protocols for doing the GHG calculations. It also lets you set goals and track your progress against them.
As you can see above, it has a good user base, with over 700 participating organizations. Whether you're working as part of a big company, small company, town government, private residence, church, or school, openeco.org can get you on the right track quickly and (very!) cheaply.
For a quick demo and tour, check out the videos below.
Kudos to Lori Duvall, who has been the main driver behind this from the beginning, to the team at CodeMagi, who have been Java programmers extraordinaire on the project, and to the Sun Eco marketing team, who has been involved since the earliest concepts.
Take a video tour of