College of Architecture + The Arts

Florida International University
College of Architecture + The Arts

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Professor Thomas Spiegelhalter Presented at ‘One Community, One Goal: Physical Infrastructure’ Panel

Associate Professor and Co-Director of the CARTA’s Structures and Environmental Technologies Lab (SET-Lab), Thomas Spiegelhalter was invited to participate in the Future of Physical Infrastructure Miami & Resilient Smart City Panel at the ‘One Community One Goal Physical Infrastructure Access’ breakfast conference at the Florida Blue offices in Miami, FL on April 13th, 2017. The conference served to inspire designing and building sustainable solutions statewide.

The panelists included George Burciaga, Director of CIVIQ Smartscapes from Chicago; Hardeep Anand, P.E. Deputy Director, Water-Sewer Department Miami Dade County; Julie Edwards, Chief Marketing Officer Brighline Transportation, Dr. Anne Birch, Florida Marine Conservation Manager of The Nature Conservancy and FIU Professor, Thomas Spiegelhalter. The panel discussion was moderated by Chief Resilience Officer of Miami Dade County, Jim Murley and included introductory presentations by multiple panelists including Dr. Penny S. Shaffer, OCOG Co-Chair Market President of Florida Blue; Merett R. Stierheim, Two-Time County Manager of Miami Dade County; Alice Bravo, Director of Transportation & Public Works of Miami-Dade County; and George Burgess, Sr. Governor Relation Strategist and Consultant, Becker & Poliakoff and Chair, Resilience Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.

At the conference, Spiegelhalter presented his widely published and awarded, carbon neutral buildings and blue-green infrastructural planning projects as well as different tracking tools such as digital scenario design protocols, cloud-based optimization software tools, post-occupancy measuring and performance benchmarking processes.

The panel discussion discussed the benefits of carbon taxing, a tax on fossil fuels, intended to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide and omit atmospheric damage and climate change. They covered how its beneficial for coastal communities to use specific carbon taxing for long-term budgeting, carbon-neutrality planning codes, enhance publicly shared information and incentives to cope with increasing costs for sea level rise adaptation and projected mass relocations of citizens in the near future. A topical issue regarding Miami, a city that’s scientifically proven for coastal flooding caused by sea level rise; an issue already impacting the city’s infrastructure, businesses, and communities.

Leading global re-insurers such as, Swiss-Re or Munich-Re, already warned and bench-marked practical adaptation scenarios for policy changes towards a clean resource, water and renewable energy economy that city decision makers and politician should take seriously and not ignore. There are many notable best-practice examples of clean, renewable energy building, blue-green infrastructural implementations promoted by SIEMENS with inter-operable automation and the internet of things (IoT) that are already assisting city operators to be more predictable and smarter in engineering and planning in adapting better to a resilient future.

Written by Thomas Spiegelhalter

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