The entertainment industry requires massive amounts of compute power for special effects, animation, game creation, and online rich media. Advances like "virtual backlots" reduce some environmental impacts, but also increase the demand for computational horsepower and communications bandwidth. IBM is now incorporating Hollywood into its Project Big Green, as announced last week at the Hollywood Goes Green conference. Here is IBM's Project Big Green video:
A movie, Sweetland, claims to be "the first independently produced American film that can be called carbon-neutral." The crew describe their on-location practices, which can be applied to all media location work:
". . . using sunlight instead of generators and film lights as often as possible; carpooling to the set; buying fewer airline tickets by not flying people home on the weekends; and being efficient with the schedule by “shooting out” a location before moving . . . to the next location."
The Revolution Will Be Televised in the April edition covers green television programming and green media practices widely reported elsewhere and covered in previous Vertatique posts. But its conclusion is thoughtful . . . .
The Sierra Club's magazine hit a Vertatique double in the March/April issue, but I could not find any indication the Club, magazine, or web site practices green computing.
1. A profile/interview with Sun Microsystems' Dave Douglas on green computing and related topics.
2. Stats on sustainability issues in movie productions . . .
The 2 May issue of TV Technology profiles KQED in San Francisco, which is looking carbon offsets short term and solar power long term to reduce its' carbon footprint. The story describes no issues particularly unique to a broadcaster, but does note that KQED offered a hemp tote bag during its most recent pledge drive when the city banned plastic grocery bags. Even a long-time staple of public broadcasting premiums can adapt to the times . . .
We first addressed the issue of more sustainable packaging for media over four years ago - you can read the original post below. A couple of years later, we looked at Fox's work to determine the carbon footprint of a DVD. A host of innovative packaging options have sprung up since, well illustrated by NBC/Universal.
Hollywood continues to move toward sustainability, although progress in reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions during the actual production/distribution cycle is slow. Neither of the two most popular approaches address industry-specific practices . . .
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) partnered with the producers of the 79th Annual Academy Awards "to significantly reduce the impact the telecast and related events had on the environment." Can this be a model for other event telecasts?
Paramount touted An Inconvenient Truth as the first carbon-neutral documentary and Syriana as the first carbon-neutral major motion picture. What can we learn from these efforts . . .?