Some key points from a great op-ed by Christine McEntee on the importance of infrastructure, which as a non-sexy issue, gets ignored all too often. Click here to read the entire piece.
•The U.S. population is expected to grow by 50 percent by 2050, much of that growth centered in big metropolitan areas, where traffic congestion already costs our economy $80 billion a year and where water and power systems are falling apart.
•More people equals more energy consumption. But oil and gas prices are escalating. That, plus the specter of climate change, means the way we power our cars, buildings and factories must change.
•Our infrastructure — the buildings, roads, bridges, power lines and plumbing that make our country run — is aging rapidly. It has been estimated that it will take $1.6 trillion dollars to make the requisite fixes — and that’s just for what’s already in place. Without more funding, falling bridges and failing levees may become far more common.
"…A decaying infrastructure. Jam-packed roads, cities and airports. Skyrocketing energy prices. A perfect storm of crises threatens not only our economic well-being, but our national security as well. We simply cannot expect to remain competitive in the global economy when the basic systems we need to prosper are underfunded and underperforming.
And worse, at a time when government at all levels faces budget deficits, finding the money to fix our infrastructure problems often means robbing Peter to pay Paul…"