This was originally published on the International Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure website. Read more about our partners.

On Thursday 9 Sept, the International Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure (ICSI) hosted a virtual discussion on accelerating the adoption of guidance, tools and standards for sustainable and resilient infrastructure.

Stakeholders across the infrastructure lifecycle use guidance, tools and standards to better plan, finance, design, deliver, operate and maintain their infrastructure assets and systems. The session explored what resources already exist to enable the delivery of sustainable and resilient infrastructure, and where key gaps have been identified.

The session was moderated by Savina Carluccio, Programme Director at ICSI, and speakers included:

  • Juliet Mian from The Resilience Shift
  • Nancy Kralik from Fluor Corporation
  • Andy Deacon from Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM), and
  • Thomas Lewis, PE, JD from WSP.

The session looked at barriers to adoption of guidance, tools & standards for sustainable and resilient infrastructure, and explored how these resources could be better utilised and promoted. The webinar was also a great opportunity to discuss the findings of ICSI’s recently published paper: A Review of the Landscape of Guidance, Tools and Standards for Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure, which identified gaps in the guidance and proposed actions to address them.

“˜The need to transform what were doing in infrastructure is urgent. What we cant afford to do is to wait for policy to slowly trickle down [the infrastructure lifecycle] until it’s reached operations and maintenance.’

– Juliet Mian, Technical Director at The Resilience Shift

“˜There remains a significant gap between identifying projects for climate action or sustainable infrastructure planning, and the ability to fully bring those to fruition. Investors have capital that they are ready to invest in urban green infrastructure, and cities have a demand for innovative financing solutions”¦ but projects aren’t moving forward from the concept stage”¦ often because of a lack of support in the pre-feasibility stages of project preparation.’

– Andy Deacon, Acting Managing Director at the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM)

“˜Procurement can be implemented at any point in the lifecycle and it has significant potential for positive impacts. The earlier in the project that sustainable actions and purchases are implemented, the more flexibility you have in maintaining the cost and schedule, and the more opportunities [there are] to incorporate those actions.’

– Nancy Kralik, Sustainability Group Chair at Fluor Corporation

“˜Doing some of this work on sustainability and resilience can increase the capital costs by a few percent”¦ but if you analyse what you get as a return on that investment across the entire lifecycle, in almost every case I’ve ever seen where the calculation was done, it pencils out”¦ as well as building in the other added benefits such as biodiversity and increased air quality. If you build all those elements into your business case, it becomes a no brainer.’

– Tom Lewis, National Business Line Leader for Climate, Resilience & Sustainability at WSP

If you missed it, you can watch a recording of the session here.

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