"A really important conversation” was how one participant described the recent ICE Scotland Leaders Debate on Scotland’s Future Infrastructure, chaired by ICE President Paul Sheffield.
Covid-19 has highlighted the fundamental importance of our existing infrastructure systems and has placed a renewed emphasis on infrastructure as the backbone of economic recovery.
There remains too a focus on climate change. As has become clear with the Stonehaven train derailment, landslips at the Rest and be Thankful and the breach of the Union Canal - today’s infrastructure must adapt if it is to be climate resilient.
Participants focused on three fundamental questions:
- What does Scotland’s Future Infrastructure look like? Do we understand our infrastructure requirements moving forward?
- What are the challenges, practical steps and the costs associated with making that vision a reality?
- What can industry, as well as government, do to deliver the right infrastructure landscape in Scotland?
Following presentations from Scottish Futures Trust, the Infrastructure Commission for Scotland and ICE Scotland – a vibrant discussion covered diverse topics from regulatory effectiveness, infrastructure delivery mechanisms and – critically – funding possibilities.
After the event, ICE Scotland Director, Hannah Smith, said: “It was excellent to gather key figures across Scotland’s infrastructure landscape for this incredibly thought-provoking debate. It’s clear that there are no easy answers to the difficult questions facing the sector, so opportunities like this to collaborate and share knowledge are increasingly important.
“This session will help inform our work going forward and I thank all those who took part.”