OpenEI.org (Open Energy Information) is built on a linked, open-data platform to facilitate the exchange of renewable energy information by members of its community. Similar in scope to Wikipedia, OpenEI encourages contributions from its users, which can then be vetted by fellow members to ensure accurate, up-to-date information. A key objective of the website is to serve as a reliable resource for people searching for answers to their questions on renewable energy, with the ultimate goal of helping them to make better, more informed decisions about their energy use.
Looking to the future, our vision for OpenEI is to create an online, grassroots movement that not only fosters the sharing of knowledge within the community, but also disseminates that knowledge far and wide. As more and more people learn about the benefits of renewable energy—both to our planet as well as the bottom line—demand for its use will continue to grow, eventually outpacing the demand for other, less sustainable types of fuels and helping to reduce our global carbon footprint.
We realize that our vision is incredibly challenging, and thus we need as much community involvement as we can get. We are hoping that exposure of our project on PBS’s “Planet Forward Earth Day Special” will help raise awareness and grow our community, ultimately generating the type of grassroots involvement this project needs to get off the ground and really have an impact.