The U.S. Senate on August 10 passed a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, including massive investments in new roads and bridges and upgrades to aging power grids and communication systems across the country. CU Boulder experts are available to discuss the bill’s potential impact on natural hazards mitigation, renewable energy and climate change.

On natural disaster mitigation

Keith Porter, adjoint professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering and the Natural Hazards Center, is an expert in how natural disasters affect the built environment and society. He led a recent study, Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves, about the benefits and costs of disaster mitigation. He can discuss how investment in infrastructure today can mitigate financial losses from natural disasters long-term. ”I think $1 trillion may greatly reduce but will not close our infrastructure investment gap,” he said. 

On renewable energy integration

Bri-Mathias Hodge is associate professor of electrical, computer and energy engineering and a fellow of the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI) at CU Boulder, as well as Chief Scientist in the Power Systems Engineering Center at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). He can speak generally to renewable power systems and infrastructure system interactions, and can discuss the operational and planning challenges posed by the integration of renewable energy sources into power grids, such as wind and solar power. 

On renewable energy and climate change

Kyri Baker is assistant professor of civil, environmental and architectural engineering, holds a courtesy appointment in electrical, computer and energy engineering, and has a joint appointment at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) through the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI). She can discuss carbon-free/renewable energy—including nuclear power—the challenges of operating such a complex system efficiently under the effects of climate change, and cutting electricity bills. 

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