Utility poles, street lights and rights of way may all become valuable, revenue generating assets

By Richelle Elberg, principal research analyst at Navigant Research. The opinions represented in this piece are independent of Smart Cities Dive’s views. 4 Jan 2018 I once wrote in a Navigant white paper that utilities need to stop building application-specific, siloed networks and think more holistically about their future communications needs. With the proliferation of distributed generation (DG), electric vehicles (EVs) and …

To Save the Internet We Must Own the Networks

The FCC and Congress have given us both the incentive and the opportunity to build a nationwide democratic Internet governed in the public interest. By David Morris ILSR “Our focus right now and for the foreseeable future must be on promoting democratic broadband networks,” writes Morris, “guided by the needs of their customers and their communities.  Which means doubling, tripling, increasing ten …

Community broadband stories

Colorado County agrees on plan to finish broadband project by Niki Turner, Rio Blanco Herald Times, niki@theheraldtimes.com RBC | Following news that Colorado Fiber Community (CFC), the company contracted to install broadband infrastructure had run out of money and new connections would slow to a crawl, Rio Blanco County Commissioners met to find a way to finish the project. Commissioner Shawn Bolton said …

Avoided trips and energy efficiency with the internet

CS Monitor, 2008 and study by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE)  All America’s servers – the computers that direct traffic on the Internet – and the systems that cool them use about 1.2 percent of the nation’s electricity, according to a study last year. That’s still a lot of power, comparable to the energy used by color TVs in …

Why ubiquitous broadband and green ICT go hand-in-hand

Utility/Smart City Dive, By Charles Despins, 15 Aug 2017 Editor’s Note: This piece was written by Charles Despins, co-chair of IEEE Green ICT Initiative. The opinions represented in this piece are independent of Smart Cities Dive’s views. Today, efforts to create “smart communities” bring critical trends, too often considered as unrelated, into sharper focus. However, the solutions to all of these trends – including …

Three Forces Fighting Local Renewable Energy and Three Ways to Fight Back

24 July 2017. By John Farrell The content that follows was originally published by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance  If you’re reading energy news of late, you might have come across three new ways that forces are aligning against local renewable energy. State governments are increasingly pre-empting local authority on a range of issues, including energy. Utility companies are undercutting state …

A people-owned internet exists. Here is what it looks like

By Nathan Schneider August 8, 2017  P2P Foundation  The future of the internet is in peril, thanks to surveillance, net neutrality and other assaults. But there are communities that are building their own. Like many Americans, I don’t have a choice about my internet service provider. I live in a subsidized housing development where there’s only one option, and it happens to …

Arkansas Utility Leads On Energy & Broadband

August 17th, 2017 by John Farrell Originally published at ilsr.org.  This article was co-written with ILSR’s Community Broadband Networks initiative research associate, Hannah Trostle, and this piece is cross-posted on MuniNetworks.org. Ouachita Electric Cooperative, nestled deep in south-central Arkansas, is an unlikely innovator in a pair of industries struggling to adapt to shifting market dynamics: electricity and broadband. Despite rising demand for energy efficiency and …

Nearly 40 percent of rural U.S. residents lack access to high-speed internet: why another FDR, allowance of municipal service provision, and funding for cooperatives are needed.

Excerpts from In These Times, August 2017 Nearly 40 percent of rural U.S. residents lack access to high-speed internet. In the nation’s urban and metropolitan areas that figure is closer to 5 percent. The consequences of that disparity are considerably higher than whether you can binge-watch something on Netflix. Without high-speed connections, rural residents are being shut out of the 21st century …