Gainesville Green, a website created by a collaboration between Acceleration, International Carbon Bank and Exchange, and the University of Florida Program for Resource Efficient Communities, and intended for Gainesville, Florida residents, is driving change in energy use. The website centers on a tool, a map of Gainesville residences, to highlight energy use at individual residences', apartment complexes, and entire subdivisions. Gainesville Green believes that making this information open and transparent will allow residents to make more informed decisions about their energy use, and will go a long way towards reducing energy usage in Gainesville.
Gainesville Green users have the ability to compare location and consumption data across several sources. Residents can then use an easy ranking system to compete against other residents, pushing reductions in energy usage. As more users add their information, the competition increases and the reductions in energy use become more apparent.
The goals of Gainesville Green are found under the 'overview' tab:
- educate consumers on the relationship between energy usage and carbon footprint
- provide consumers with tools to help reduce usage
- provide tools that allow consumers to analyze data however they wish
- provide utilities with a tool to track DSM programs openly
- provide a central database to track and display energy-related information
Gainesville Green and OpenEI both share the open and transparent data and information vision. Information and data, when presented to consumers in a visual and usable way, is a great resource and driver of change through added awareness. More resources of this nature are needed to continue pushing towards renewable energy and energy efficiency goals.