IPCC Scientist Encourages Video Conferencing
We know that telecommuting is green, and we also know that emissions from the airline industry are growing. At the same time, high fuel prices are prompting the airlines to raise ticket prices, charge for checked bags, cut back on flights, and in any number of other ways make flying even less pleasant. It was with all this in mind that, "at a meeting in the UK this past week, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, a climate scientist with the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), strongly urged businesses to cut employee travel, and to fill the void with video conferencing."Video Conferencing--Not a Silver Bullet
Video conferencing would undoubtedly lower carbon emissions, and there are probably lots of business trips that could be avoided with video conferencing. Unfortunately, some business deals simply can't be done electronically, and there is still resistance to the idea from many employers. What's more, while airfare is expensive and getting more so, the technology behind advanced video conferencing isn't exactly cheap. Over time, we expect to see two trends: increasing awareness about the impacts of air travel will make video conferencing more acceptable, and higher ticker prices combined with more inexpensive conferencing technology will make the whole process the economically sound choice. However, one last note: air travel has made the world a smaller place, exposed more cultures to one another and enabled a greater and more rapid exchange of ideas. So as we work to reduce the amount of flights we take, we shouldn't forget the positive aspects of our highly mobile society.
Via: ::Autopia (Wired Blog)
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