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Focusing on environmental policy, it was founded in 1993 by activist and author Alan Durning. Its stated mission is to "make the Northwest a global model of sustainability—strong communities, a green economy, and a healthy environment".
The Institute's "Cascadia Scorecard", published every year since 2004, scores the Pacific Northwest bioregion on measurable progress towards sustainability in seven areas: health, economy, population, energy, sprawl, wildlife, and pollution. Other publications have focused on environmental tax shift proposals, and "Seven Wonders for a Cool Planet: Everyday Things to Help Solve Global Warming", published by Sierra Club Books.
- "In Our View - Carrot and Stick; 'Feebates' encourage fuel efficiency". The Columbian – via HighBeam (subscription required). 13 May 2004. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
- Blatter, Joachim (2003). Neil Brenner, Bob Jessop, Martin Jones, Gordon Macleod, ed. State / Space:A Reader. Blackwell. p. 200. ISBN 9780470754719.
- Durbin, Kathy (10 March 2004). "Survey: Urban sprawl needs attention". The Columbian – via HighBeam (subscription required). Retrieved 2 March 2017.
- Sightline Institute (official website)