Previewing Green Broadband 2010

On Tuesday, September 21, Light Reading and Heavy Reading will host Green Broadband 2010 – our third annual conference focused on environmental issues in telecom – at the Westin Times Square in New York. Much has happened on the environmental front since we last staged the event in June 2009, so I am eager to assess the progress the ICT industry has made over the past 15 months.

To kick off the event, Heavy Reading will present key findings from a major new survey addressing the environmental readiness and green strategies of service providers. Using this data as a backdrop, Green Broadband 2010 will focus on expanding the dialogue, providing an objective view of the progress that telcos and cable operators are making in devising strategies, and putting them into practice.

To facilitate that discussion, Green Broadband 2010 will tackle a number of critical issues, making use of keynote addresses, presentations, panel discussions, and debates.

First up, in our Beating the Heat panel, we will discuss the innovative new approaches that network operators and vendors are exploring to cool off hot data centers, central offices, and headend facilities. While some new technologies promise up to 85 percent savings over traditional methods, the panel will examine how much savings can actually be commercially realized. In addition, the panel will weigh the cost and implementation challenges associated with these new approaches.

Then, in the first of the day's two keynote addresses, Jorge Salinger, VP of Access Architecture for Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) Cable, will discuss the environmental, power-savings, and cost benefits of cable operators deploying much denser edge QAM and CMTS equipment, particularly Comcast's planned Converged Multiservice Access Platform (CMAP). Because CMAP will integrate all narrowcast and broadcast digital QAM channels for each RF port, this approach promises to deliver four times the capacity for half the space and power required today.

In the following Getting Down to Business on Going Green session, we will debate the critical components of business cases that cable operators and telcos should consider to ensure that green projects are not adversely affected by tightening budgets and competition with other capex initiatives. In addition, the session will look at how much progress the telecom industry has made in developing a universal set of key performance indicators (KPIs) for green initiatives. Panel participants include Ludwig C. Graff, Director of Corporate Network & Technology for Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), and Sam Chernak, SVP of Network Architecture for Comcast Cable.

This debate session will also be Webcast live to a global audience. To register for the Webcast, please click here.

In the day's second keynote presentation, Iyad Tarazi, VP of Network Development & Engineering for Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), will discuss the sustainability goals that guide Sprint's programs. He will also address the challenges that Sprint and other carriers face in attempting to "green the network," outlining some of the organization's key lessons learned and the successes it has achieved on the path toward sustainability.

With fiber and Ethernet rapidly becoming dominant technologies for fixed, wireless, and cable networks, our Implementing Green Ethernet Solutions panel will tackle the environmental impacts of these technologies from several perspectives. Whether used for supporting delivery of fixed broadband services or wireless backhaul, Ethernet is changing the face of transport networks. This session will consider the favorable environmental effects of deploying Ethernet, looking at not only power consumption savings, but also new revenue opportunities for network operators. Joe Savage, President of the Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) Council in North America, will share his insights on the impact of fiber deployment initiatives.

Finally, Cynthia Brumfield, Director of Research for the Utilities Telecom Council Inc. , will discuss the council's research on implementing smart grids. While the environmental impacts of smart grids are apparent and smart grids represent a strategic imperative to meet future needs, many questions still remain about how to implement them. In her presentation, Cynthia will address some unique requirements that the industry must consider to ensure the delivery of safe, reliable, and cost-effective 21st-century energy grids.

My colleague, Alan Breznick, and I hope to meet you at the event, either virtually or in person. To register, please click here.

— Jim Hodges, Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading, and Green Broadband 2010 Chair

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