WSP Electric Vehicles Now


Oct 13 2020
11:00 AM

Planning for Every Day, Good or Bad: Future Ready and Hazard Mitigation Planning for Battery Electric Buses

How do you keep an electric bus running in a power outage? What do you when it’s too cold,  too hot, too wet, or too dry? 

There’s a lot to think about in the transition to electric buses, but hazard mitigation planning can never come too early in the process. Understanding what the risks are and how to address them before disaster strikes is essential to the long-term success of a zero emissions bus (ZEB) program. In this conversation between Prof. Catherine Lawson and Heather Unger agencies will gain an understanding of the Future Ready framework, important risks to consider with transitioning to ZEB, and how to mitigate those risks through leveraging relationships with other local agencies and utilizing resources such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

This session is on the Main Route - Morning.



 Heather Unger

Heather Unger is a Senior Sustainability Consultant and Future Ready Program Director at WSP. She helps public and private clients measure, manage, and report on their organization's sustainable performance. Our sustainability expertise includes strategy and program design, goal setting, climate resilience, energy, GHG, water and waste, product sustainability and LCA, supply chain, and public reporting.
As Program Director for Future Ready at WSP, Heather supports and guides agencies to better anticipate future conditions, develop industry leading innovations, and plan for the future by integrating future trends into our work. Future Ready is WSP's approach to thinking beyond the conventional so that we can design and deliver projects that are ready for the changes and challenges that our world will face in the future.

Heather has a MLA from Harvard University Extension School in Sustainability and Environmental Management and a BS in environmental resource management from the Pennsylvania State University. She is a LEED B+C, ENV SP and a GRI certified practitioner.

Connect with Heather on Linkedin


 Catherine Lawson

Geography and Planning Associate Professor Catherine Lawson examines Urban Transportation Data and Information Systems, hazardous materials transport, transportation and land use connection, and microsimulation and GIS applications.

She is currently leading a team of researchers and students in the AVAIL (Albany Visualization And Informatics Laboratory), which seeks to empower a new generation of graduates to assimilate computer science knowledge and subject-matter expertise in the mining and dissemination of "big data," as they create groundbreaking web-based solutions for government and business.

The AVAIL team is tackling a range of open source and open data projects. Working with New Jersey Transit, AVAIL is incorporating U.S. Census household data into microsimulations of bus transit ridership to provide travelers with ultra-efficient open source trip-planning. Lawson’s team is also developing a Cloud-based decision support system for New York’s Mesonet, a statewide network of automated weather stations. Through an AVAIL-produced interactive web-based map, Mesonet stakeholders will select evidence-based sites that best serve New York. Overseas, AVAIL is transforming an academic study on community gardens by University of Glasgow colleagues into an interactive map to increase community participation in agriculture network expansion.



Online GoToWebinar


  • Opens: September 17, 2020
  • Closes: October 13, 2020



  • Speaker Presentation
  • Live Polling
  • Question & Answer Session


  • Adam Ruder, NYSERDA
  • Alva Carrasco, WSP
  • Anaïssia Franca, WSP
  • Anthony Courreges, C40 Cities
  • Prof. Catherine Lawson, University at Albany
  • Chris Reohr, NYSERDA
  • Cliff Henke, WSP
  • Dana Lowell, MJ Bradley & Associates
  • Haylee Ferington, Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council
  • Heather Unger, WSP
  • Jewels Carter, WSP
  • Jim Wensley, WSP
  • John Drayton, WSP
  • John Heaton IV, WSP
  • Pat Carr, SolTrans
  • Phil Jonat, WSP
  • Shantelle Dreamer, WSP