OPINION: Drive Wisconsin forward with sustainable transportation technologies

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There’s a saying in business that if you’re not moving forward, you’re falling behind.

That is certainly the case when it comes to technology, which plays a critical role in every aspect of our lives. Advancements in technology are moving forward more rapidly than ever, so much so that the pace with which technology advances is seen as an indicator of success.

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It helps define our role in the global economy, the value of businesses and industries and the products they produce. The same holds true for vehicles and pieces of equipment, which are following the pace of technological advancements, particularly when it comes to low- or zero-emission vehicles.

As more and more companies and municipalities develop their decarbonization plans and pledge to reduce their impacts on climate change, the demand for low- or zero-emission vehicles, equipment, fuels and technologies is increasing as well.

With the $79 million slated for Wisconsin from the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to support EV charging across the state, even more public and private organizations are expected to adopt policies to support sustainable transportation options.

For many, it can be an overwhelming task and it can be difficult to know where to begin. Knowing whether an alternative fuel or electric vehicle is best, how the vehicles perform, whether or not they fit into the budget plans and what fueling and charging infrastructure is available is key to making the right decision.

We at Wisconsin Clean Cities work to help break down those barriers to understanding and access through our work every single day. As one of the U.S. Department of Energy’s more than 75 Clean Cities coalitions, we work to support the nation’s energy and economic security by building partnerships to advance affordable domestic transportation fuels, energy-efficient mobility systems and other fuel-saving technologies and practices.

We know the needs of every fleet are unique. What works for one city or business may not work for another. That’s why it’s important to have options, access to experts in the field and opportunities to hear from professional peers who have already achieved success with sustainable transportation.

Wisconsin Clean Cities is bringing these resources together on April 28 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison for the Transportation & Innovation Expo with our co-hosts Alliant Energy, the City of Madison and Madison Gas & Electric.

The event will feature breakout sessions and general sessions with industry experts sharing information on how sustainable transportation choices can reduce emissions and improve your bottom line as well as access to a variety of sustainable vehicles and pieces of equipment in the 70,000-square-foot exhibit hall.

Industry representatives will be on hand in the expo hall to meet one-on-one with attendees to answer questions as well. Attendees will also have the chance to get behind the wheel of an electric vehicle during the ride and drive.

The event is free for fleet managers, but registration is required. More information, including registration, is available online at www.wicleancities.org.

The time to decide whether to drive your organization forward with sustainable transportation technologies and innovations or fall behind is now. Do your part to help drive Wisconsin forward by being part of the solution.

This column originally appeared in The LaCrosse Tribune & other Lee Enterprises newspapers across Wisconsin. Lorrie Lisek is executive director of Wisconsin Clean Cities and president of Legacy Environmental Services. The opinions are the writer’s.

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