In mid-2012 the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters initiated a project to examine Wisconsin’s climate and energy future. The Wisconsin Academy has a significant history of gathering thoughtful leaders from multiple perspectives to provide insight and shared wisdom on major challenges that affect our state and the world.
Global climate change, driven by increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, is one of the most serious social, economic, and environmental challenges of our time; it is intimately coupled with the challenge of attaining clean and sustainable energy sources that minimize the release of carbon dioxide. These are global, national, and Wisconsin challenges. Given Wisconsin’s wealth of scientific and technical capacity in these areas, its rich conservation heritage, and the anticipated impacts of climate change on Wisconsin life, we wanted to stimulate more public dialogue on this topic and spark innovative solutions.
To this end, we developed a new tool to provide an assessment of where we are today and a practical vision for how we can build on Wisconsin values and our citizens’ creativity and imagination to shape a future that is good for our environment and our economy. This tool is a report called Climate Forward: A New Road Map for Wisconsin’s Climate and Energy Future, published by the Academy in 2014.
In 2015, we took core content from the report and developed this interactive web portal; in 2017 we issued an update that highlights overarching trends on energy and climate change in our state since the publication of our comprehensive 2014 report, This platform provides an overview of our Climate Forward Report and offers additional resources for businesses, policy-makers, municipal and local governments, and community leaders who wish to learn more about Wisconsin's potential for a clean energy future. Through our Profiles, you will have the opportunity to learn from those businesses, organizations, and local governments already leading the way in Wisconsin. Our Strategies by Sector tab provides information on the status of—and pathways forward for—energy efficiency, renewable energy, transportation, natural carbon storage, and leadership in our state. Explore the Options for Action tab for a complete list of specific actions that advance a healthier Wisconsin.
What Wisconsin do you want to see in 20, 50, 100 years? What insights do you have? E-mail Environmental Initiatives Staff to share your ideas and provide suggestions for our web portal.
Book and web portal designed by Huston Design, Madison.
Copyright © 2014 by the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters. This report is intended for educational purposes only and can be reproduced in part or whole with proper acknowledgement of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters. Unless otherwise noted, all websites referenced were accessed in May 2014.
The Climate Forward Report and web portal are made possible by a generous grant from the Sally Mead Hands Foundation. We also wish to extend our appreciation for the in-kind donation of staff hours, meeting space, travel expenses, videography, and other services and resources contributed by the many participating organizations and institutions from which our steering committee members, advisors, reviewers, and volunteers were drawn. Thank you all for your time and effort.
ContributorsWisconsin Academy Contributors
Initiatives Director (2012-2014)
Initiatives Director (2014-present)
Jason A. Smith
Advisor and Academy Board President Emeritus
James W. Perry
Advisor and Academy Board Secretary
Advisor and Academy Vice President of Sciences
Advisor and Academy Board MemberContributors
Transportation Analyst, RE-AMP/1000 Friends of Wisconsin
Executive Director, Wisconsin Interfaith Power and Light
Coordinator for Public Policy, Wisconsin Council of Churches
Kelly D. Cain
Director, St. Croix Institute for Sustainable Community Development
Professor, Environmental Science & Management, UW–River Falls
Founder and Executive Director, Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council
Urban Agriculture Extension Educator, Purdue University
Former editorial assistant of Wisconsin People & Ideas, Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters
Director of Exhibits and Digital Curricula, Aldo Leopold Nature Center and Nature Net: the Environmental Learning Network
Co-Founder and Executive Director, Wisconsin Environmental Initiative
Executive Director, West Central Wisconsin Community Action Agency Inc. (West CAP)
Executive Director, Cool Choices
Associate Director, UW Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems
Mary Woolsey Schlaefer
President and CEO, Wisconsin Energy Conservation Corporation
Senior Policy Director, Clean Wisconsin
URSCA Director and Associate Professor of English, Office of Undergraduate Research, Scholarly and Creative Activity, UW–River Falls
Richard D. Stewart
Chair, Department of Business and Economics, UW–Superior
Director, Transportation and Logistics Research Center, UW–Superior
Co-Director, Great Lakes Maritime Research Institute, UW–Superior
Stanley A. Temple
Beers-Bascom Professor Emeritus in Conservation, University of Wisconsin
Senior Fellow, Aldo Leopold Foundation
WPPI Energy (retired)
US Department of Energy Electric Advisory Committee
Senior Associate, Center on Wisconsin Strategy
Advisor, RENEW Wisconsin
Eudai Energy, LLC
Mary F. Wright
Associate Professor of Literacy Education, UW–River FallsAdvisors
Program Evaluation Consultant and Volunteer, Citizen’s Climate Lobby, 350.org
President, Energy Center of Wisconsin
Executive Director, 1000 Friends of Wisconsin
Community Climate Adaptation, Land Use Team Leader, WI Department of Natural Resources (retired)
Sustainability Leader, ThedaCare
Principal, P Squared Group
Chapter Director, Sierra ClubUW–Madison Student Interns
Luke Albers – Green Bay Packaging (not in report)
Kris Canto – MillerCoors
Chris Hoffman – Emerald Dairy
Steph Veazie – Gundersen Health System