Rewiring the Northwest’s Energy Infrastructure shows how the Northwest will be able to advance an affordable, resilient and integrated energy system, mostly powered by renewable energy and uniting now-separate electrical, transportation and heating sectors with a state-driven integrated infrastructure strategy. The report draws on interviews with dozens of Northwest energy experts and visionaries and shows seismic changes coming to an energy system now broken into discrete silos and little changed from a century ago.
The new report is the first in the Center for Sustainable Infrastructure’s “Five Big Goals for 2040” research series. The series engages leading thinkers and innovative practitioners in mapping the path to achieve a transformative 2040 infrastructure vision in the Pacific Northwest.
“Infrastructure investments across our energy, water, transportation, and waste management systems add up to a generational legacy. The billions we spend in Oregon and Washington year after year, much of it for projects designed to last 25 years or more, will – for good or ill – fundamentally reshape our infrastructure systems and our built environment,” said CSI Director, Rhys Roth. “The Five Big Goals reports will help build alignment around a vision for how our infrastructure systems will work in 2040, and show how we can rethink near-term investments to get where we want to go in the longer-term.”
According to Roth, the series of reports offers an opportunity to think forward 25 years and fully reimagine our infrastructure systems to be much more sustainable, resilient, affordable and beneficial. “These reports will provide both inspiration and guidance to current, as well as future, infrastructure decision-makers and leaders,” Roth said.
The Five Big Goals series turns next to the future of Water Infrastructure, including drinking water, wastewater, stormwater and more. The series then extends to transportation infrastructure, solid waste and materials management infrastructure, and finally the integrated, silo-bridging infrastructure solutions that generate more value and benefits for Northwest communities than managing infrastructure as isolated systems.
In November 2014, CSI released its inaugural report, Infrastructure Crisis, Sustainable Solutions: Rethinking Our Infrastructure Investment Strategies, which shows how Washington and Oregon is poised to become nationally-recognized innovators in sustainable infrastructure solutions that provide vital services accessible to all—supporting healthy, prosperous, beautiful, and inclusive communities.