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Tues, Sept 22nd: CLAUDIA’S BBL: Connectivity Noon-1:00
September 22, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Rural Infrastructure for the 21st Century
Reliable, affordable, high-speed internet and wider cell phone coverage are no longer luxuries – they are necessities. For years our firefighters, law enforcement officers, and paramedics in rural New Mexico have been frustrated by delays in responding to emergencies because of poor connectivity and limited access to online mapping. Add to this the new demands of students learning from home, teachers teaching from home, employees working from home, and physicians and patients using telemedicine, and it is just not working. We are failing our friends and neighbors and leaving them at risk.
Internet and cell phone providers cite the expense of bringing service “that last mile” and that the “low return on investment” precludes them from providing service to rural communities. This cost-benefit paradigm is short sighted and does not take into consideration the tangible gains that equitable internet access would provide and the economic growth it would spur. Supporting online learning applications, telehealth programs, banking and financial institutions, small business owners, farmers, and emergency responders in unconnected and under-connected communities creates financial opportunities, strengthens our economy, and improves public safety.
Connectivity in the 21st century is as essential as water and electricity. Let’s consider innovative technologies such as solar-powered airships, giant balloons, satellite internet, and wireless mesh networks in addition to – or instead of – fiber, cable and DSL wiring. If we leverage collaborative private and public partnerships we can bring these necessary services to our friends and neighbors in rural and tribal communities.
See Claudia’s complete SEPT 22 NEWSLETTER: HERE