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Cascadia Scorecard

The Cascadia Scorecard is Sightline’s sustainability report card for the Pacific Northwest.

Launched in 2004, the Cascadia Scorecard project measures the key trends that are shaping the future of our region. The Scorecard’s trends help us gauge whether the Northwest is making genuine progress towards shared goals: long and healthy lives, broadly shared prosperity, and a legacy of thriving nature. Since its inception, the Scorecard has evolved, exploring trends such as human health, population, energy, sprawl, wildlife, pollution, and more.

2012 Gasoline Consumption Report

2012 gas report infographic

Gasoline prices are high and volatile. Northwesterners are beginning to change their driving habits to adapt. Sightline’s report, Shifting into Reverse, shows that per capita vehicle travel has dropped significantly. view graphic »

Per Capita Gasoline Use in Oregon and Washington

2012 per capita gas consumption

Gasoline prices are high and volatile. Northwesterners are beginning to change their driving habits to adapt. Sightline’s report, Shifting into Reverse, shows that per capita gasoline consumption is at it’s lowest level in about 50 years. view graphic »

Per Capita VMT in Oregon and Washington

2012 vmt report graph

Gasoline prices are high and volatile. Northwesterners are beginning to change their driving habits to adapt. Sightline’s report, Shifting into Reverse, shows that per capita vehicle travel has dropped significantly. view graphic »

Rural Sprawl in Metropolitan Portland

A comparison of growth management in Oregon and Washington

Map of Exurban Portland Growth 2000-2010

The greater metro Portland, Oregon, straddles two states, offering an intriguing natural experiment for gauging the effects of different growth management laws. The Oregon side operates under the nation’s oldest and most mature growth management system, while the Washington side is governed by a newer law. Over the last two decades, Clark County, Washington, accounted for the large majority of all rural and exurban housing and population growth in the greater Portland area. read more »

Indicator Update: Cascadian Life Expectancy Increases

Despite recent economic woes, northwesterners' health has improved.

life expectancy

The people of Cascadia are living longer than ever before—a sign of robust and improving health. As of 2012, Cascadians’ lifespans had grown to 80.5 years—an increase of more than 5 years since 1980. Unlike many other quality of life indicators in Cascadia, life expectancy has improved steadily for decades. These improvements show little sign of abating, as the toll from virtually every major cause of death continues to decline. read more »

Indicator Update: A Modest Dip in Fertility

Teen births hit an all-time low.

fertility trend - Cascadia

Cascadia’s fertility rate—the average number of births over a woman’s lifetime, given current patterns of child-bearing—inched upwards in the mid-2000s, but declined again when the economy soured in 2008. Yet these trends were minor, compared with the massive fertility spike of the baby boom, when Northwest fertility rates peaked at nearly 4 lifetime births per woman. Since the mid-1970s fertility rates in the Northwest have remained comparatively stable, ranging between 1.8 and 2.0 total births over a woman’s lifetime. read more »

Peak Gas?

NW Gas Consumption Stalled in 1999

Peak Gas: NW Gas Consumption Stalled in 1999

Gasoline consumption in Oregon and Washington increased slightly in 2010, and sales held steady in the first part of 2011. But minor year-to-year fluctuations mask a more important trend: despite steady increases in population, volatile gas prices, and both surges and lulls in the region’s economy, gasoline use has remained essentially flat since 1999. read more »

Energy Use Remains High—And Costly

Despite high prices, fossil fuel consumption remains stuck in high gear.

energy-bc-nw

On average, Cascadians burn 9 gallons of gasoline and diesel each week, and use enough electricity in homes and businesses to keep ten 100-watt light bulbs burning continuously (with an extra 25-watt compact fluorescent thrown in for good measure). All told, the typical Northwest resident consumes the energy-equivalent of just over two gallons of gasoline every single day. That’s nearly double the energy consumption of more energy-efficient industrialized nations such as Germany, Great Britain, and Japan–nations that enjoy high standards of living despite consuming far less energy per person than northwesterners do. read more »

Northwest Wildlife Icons and their Ecosystems Still at Risk

Cascadia Scorecard update finds uneven progress

Wildlife trends for five Northwest species

According to Sightline’s Cascadia Scorecard, several of the region’s wildlife icons are still at risk. Overall, gains for salmon, orcas, and wolves outweighed declines in caribou and sage-grouse, pushing the index to an all-time high. Still, more progress is needed. read more »

Maps: Current and Historic Wildlife Ranges

Map of gray wolf range in Cascadia

Maps showing current and historical ranges for selected species, including grizzly bear, sage-grouse, caribou, salmon, and gray wolf. read more »