Tech giants commit to helping Obama spread word on climate change
March 19th, 2014
02:15 PM ET
9 years ago

Tech giants commit to helping Obama spread word on climate change

Washington (CNN) – President Barack Obama is getting some help from the country's tech giants in his effort to show Americans how climate change will affect their communities.

The private sector commitments from firms like Google and Microsoft come at the same time the White House announced Wednesday a new government initiative to make public data related to climate more accessible to the public, with the goal of spurring better preparation and prevention for eventual changes to Americans' environment.

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The Obama administration thinks that local data, which may have a real-world effect on Americans' lives, will provide a convincing argument for steps to prevent climate change. The risk rising sea levels have on individual communities will be the focus of a new website,, which uses government data to put environmental changes in context.

The White House also called on tech companies to develop tools for Americans to better get a grasp on how climate change could affect them.

Google, for example, is committing cloud computing infrastructure to help create maps that show the risks of extreme drought. Google's home state of California has withstood a historic drought this year that's severely affected its large agricultural sector.

Microsoft said it would award a year of free cloud computing resources to climate scientists who enter a company-sponsored competition.

Obama has pledged to renew his efforts on climate change during his second term, including using executive actions that bypass Congress. He's introduced new regulations on truck emissions and created so-called "climate hubs" that help businesses prepare for the effects of climate change.

Last month Obama proposed a new $1 billion climate preparedness fund, though Congressional approval seems unlikely, at least ahead of November's midterm elections.

Obama and his administration are also approaching a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. Environmental groups argue the project would contribute to climate change since it wouldn't help reduce the nation's dependence on fossil fuels.

Filed under: climate change • President Obama
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Pollopa


    The only family members I've had killed were by republicans who controlled congress and the white house who sent my cousin to die in a war for oil control in Iraq. By contrast my Sister just got onto our parents health care plan and now her pre-existing condition with a blood born disease is being properly treated and managed probably adding years to her life. Sad to see someone as yourself so willfully ignorant.

    March 19, 2014 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |

    70's Global Cooling
    80's-90's Global Warming
    00's – 10's Climate Change

    Have a new term for it yet? Keep throwing whatever you can to see what sticks.

    March 19, 2014 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  3. Tampa Tim

    Dean – When you show up at the emergency room, please don't make us pay for your treatment.

    March 19, 2014 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. YoonYoungJo

    Or, we could just pretend like its not happening. Because that always solves the problem. Or we could just cast it off. After all, most of us will be dead in 100-200 years or so when it will be really bad. Or we could be realistic and actually address it now like the Bama admin is doing. And I don't mean just forcing the consumers to make a difference but challenge companies that profit off it to make a difference. Then again, I guess that is a harder sell. I do applaud some of the big oil companies for at least starting to look into alternative fuels and energy. I guess they are realizing that they themselves might not be around when things get really bad but hey do I really want to leave a sesspool of an earth to my grandchildren?

    March 19, 2014 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  5. smith

    @Rudy-You didn`t read my comment fully. I would find a way to stop the two buckets(China and India). You choose to ignore them and wish for the best.

    March 19, 2014 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    GOP is out of touch, gone pretty much for another fifty years or so.

    March 19, 2014 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  7. Winning


    Please explain why the dark side of the Earth doesn't cool to far below freezing. I don't want to hear about hockey stick graphs, I want you to expand with a real display of your years of education on the subject.

    March 19, 2014 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  8. Gary Kunkel

    I'm not impressed. By all accounts I'll take notice when they commit their resources to helping people adapt to the change they are certain will arrive such as efforts to relocate those in danger of rising tides, or larger segments of the population to cooler locations. Or perhaps the development of new farming methods needed for the new climate.

    If Global Warming is a certain crisis, they must be a part of the solution and not cheer by the sidelines – that is if Global Warming actually is a real crisis caused by man. It is, isn't it?

    March 19, 2014 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  9. Marie MD

    @California, you more than anyone should be cognizant of the weather. Smog comes to mind.
    The teaklans are all a bunch of idiots with no new ideas but against everything that makes sense and is true.

    March 19, 2014 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  10. Winning


    Also, talking about global cooling as though it is somehow a criticism of all climate science shows your complete and utter ignorance of the scientific process. Science is the process of observing, forming hypotheses, and testing those hypotheses. Statements based on scientific evidence are prone to change based on new evidence. In that regard it is entirely unlike your ridiculous, dogmatic religion of conservatism.

    March 19, 2014 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
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