IP and energy: going green's growing importance


Susan Gorman

IP and energy: going green's growing importance

'Green' is a buzzword that gets applied liberally to describe anything from architecture to politicians, from disposable plates to energy. But how does that translate when it comes to intellectual property, asks Susan Gorman.

The theme underlying the use of the word ‘green’ revolves around environmental issues: ‘green’ structures that are resource-efficient, ‘green’ political figures or organisations that support environmentalism, ‘green’ serving ware that is biodegradable and compostable, and ‘green’ energy that reduces our dependence on traditional energy sources, such as petroleum, coal and natural gas.

Yet while many of today’s ‘green’ products may simply be exploiting the cachet of being green and will not have staying power (Kermit the Frog® notwithstanding), green energy seems to be one area that will not be disappearing any time soon.

Green energy is a catchphrase for energy produced from many types of alternative and renewable or sustainable sources such as the action of biological organisms, solar, wind, hydroelectric, geothermal, wave power and tidal power. Each of these technological categories has undergone remarkable growth in the last decade and shows no sign of slowing down.

Green energy, IP