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January 22nd, 2010
A couple weeks ago, I was sent this article by a friend: Metcalfe brings VC perspective to Alternative Energy. Metcalfe is an interesting guy that has a great perspective. I skimmed through it and this part really popped out at me: “Networking isn’t the only goal Metcalfe’s been using to try to change people’s thinking on energy technology. “Green” has been politicized, he says, and its anti-business stigma is an impediment. Rather than “green tech,” or “cleantech,” Metcalfe’s been beating a drum for adoption of the term, “enertech.”
I agree with Metcalfe that “Green” has been politicized and tends to divide people even though everyone agrees with the principles (i.e. no one likes to get cancer and thus dislikes the things that cause it). I’ve tended to use the term “clean Tech” in the past because I feel it frames the issue nicely (something Republicans have long been good at, and no I’m not a Democrat either) in terms of clean versus dirty. If something isn’t clean, it must be dirty and that’s bad. Easy to understand. Metcalfe’s perspective is interesting but I think it misses the point, “green” and “clean” are more than just about energy. It’s about food, building materials, toxins, yadda yadda yadda. It’s also possible that he understands this but simply feels “enerTech” will be a more useful name due to the politicization of the two other words.
But I really think this one is still up for debate and I want to hear what you think. Which terms do you use and why?
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