How is Dubuque Getting Smarter?

How is Dubuque harnessing the power of new techonologies to become a more sustainable city?
In its quest to become a more sustainable city, Dubuque is exploring and using new “smarter” technologies and strategies to deliver or better utilize vital services such as water, energy,  and transportation to its citizens while reducing the community’s impact on the environment. These new technologies digitize and connect city systems, sense, analyze and integrate data, and allow Dubuque to respond intelligently to the needs of citizens.  Collecting and analyzing this information will give consumers and city policymakers new insights on how to conserve Dubuque’s resources and behave in more sustainable ways.

How is Dubuque getting smarter?
  • Restoring and revitalizing downtown Dubuque to provide much-needed housing and office space, while implementing measures that will save money, energy and materials
  • Installing a new water metering system and utilizing locally manufactured components to provide the most accurate water usage measurements possible
  • Working with IBM Research to develop a website (portal) where citizens can monitor their water and energy use and consider changes to create savings 
  • Implementing software to gather data, monitor spot patterns and anomalies, and analyze interdependencies between water, waste treatment, and electricity systems so Dubuque can respond intelligently to the needs of citizens
  • Promoting behavior that will translate into better water utilization and energy savings by Dubuque’s citizens
  • Supplying citizens with tools and information that will empower them to make educated choices to change behavior, reduce costs, and identify long-lasting sustainable opportunities
  • Partnering with local and regional private businesses, nonprofit organizations, local and state government agencies, and several federal agencies to develop plans for sustainability that lower costs, reduce environmental impact, and create local jobs
How does this change the way people are contributing to Dubuque’s sustainability?
The key to long-term sustainability is to give consumers and businesses the information they need to make informed decisions about how they consume resources like electricity, water, natural gas, and oil. For example, Dubuque’s new water metering system allows consumers to identify waste and consider corrective measures that translate into better water utilization and energy savings. Dubuque is becoming a model “smarter” community for the nation as a result of its improved use of resources, increased savings, expanded markets, job opportunities, and strong workforce, all of which have contributed to making the community a hub for innovation.