This NSF Engines Development Award is focused on accelerating the equitable decarbonization of the power grid and energy systems in the Inland Northwest by establishing INTENT - Inland Northwest CenTer for ENergy and DecarbonizaTion, a cross-sector public-private collaboration with distinct concentration on the social, economic, and environmental impacts of the power grid. We aim to lead the transition to clean energy and create a sustainable future for all.
Our mission is to build upon the region's rich history in clean energy and resource stewardship to achieve measurable improvements in economic growth, sustainability, environmental equity, and workforce opportunities. By scaling our solutions to other regions, we seek to achieve global impact in the clean energy transition.
We collaborate with an extensive partner ecosystem, including research universities, national labs, investor-owned utilities, non-profit organizations, public utility districts, and sector-leading for-profit companies. Urbanova is the grant awardee.
Together, we harness the power of diverse perspectives and expertise aligned to drive innovation in clean energy.
INTENT is founded on the belief that we can only maximize our competitiveness as a region and a nation when we fully address existing inequities. INTENT will drive transformative energy initiatives that accelerate the equitable decarbonization of the grid, preserve scarce natural resources, improve jobs, facilitate productive investments, and stimulate economic mobility for the people of the Inland Northwest. INTENT will develop scalable and replicable models for implementation in other regions and will help the nation retain competitiveness in modern power grid and decarbonization technologies.
All stakeholders deserve to know the return on their efforts to accelerate the equitable transition to carbon-free energy system and help to solve the complex social, economic, and environmental challenges faced by communities. Sustaining a culture of innovation requires nurturing and caretaking on the part of every participant. The culture will be built on the foundation of authentic demonstration of living the values of the organization. To ensure that INTENT is effectively gaining inclusive inputs across the planning period, a wide variety of engagement modes will be employed. Tribal representation in the leadership of INTENT is a foundational principle for our economic engine.
With an accomplished record of success in clean energy and resource stewardship, the region is ideally situated to accelerate energy innovation that is safe, clean, affordable, equitable, and reliable. INTENT applies a systems approach to creating regional ecosystem partnerships. The results and outcomes from INTENT will be measured in terms of economic growth, sustainability, natural resource preservation, environmental equity, and sustained, inclusive workforce opportunity. INTENT develops improved business models, advances, and deploys critical enabling technologies, drives well-paying jobs from craft/trade to professional and cultivates regional talent from K-20.
Advancing industry-informed fundamental and applied research from idea to demonstration to production at scale through a network of 12+ laboratories.
Cultivating and sustaining workforce capabilities in support of regional clean energy innovation with learning pathways spanning from early education to upskilling and reskilling.
Informing and inspiring research, workforce, and investment by defining requirements to meet existential decarbonization goals.
Boosting the scaling of curated ideas, optimizing incubation and spin-outs, and evaluating funding methods to bolster investor confidence across funding stages. Creating investment strategies for INTENT's long-term sustainability.
Launched by NSF's new Directorate for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships and authorized by the "CHIPS and Science Act of 2022," the NSF Engines program uniquely harnesses the nation's science and technology research and development enterprise and regional-level resources. NSF Engines aspire to catalyze robust partnerships to positively impact regional economies, accelerate technology development, address societal challenges, advance national competitiveness and create local, high-wage jobs. Type-1 Development Awards are intended to enable awardees to lay the groundwork for submitting a successful Type-2 proposal to launch a full-scale NSF Engine.
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Cooperative Agreement No. 2304058. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
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