The Crumbling of America
"Throughout world history, great civilizations have survived and extended their rule through dependence on great infrastructures. Rome had its roads and aqueducts. The Mayans had their pyramids and palaces. But what happens when society neglects its infrastructure? Right now, the U.S. infrastructure is collapsing and it impacts every single person in this country. In the first half of the 20th century, our bridges, highways, tunnels, dams, levees, ports, water and gas pipelines were built during the greatest age of construction the world had ever seen. But now these steel and concrete achievements are deteriorating. More than 70,000 of our nation's bridges are rated structurally deficient. Massive grid failures have left millions in the dark. 25,000 miles of commercial navigable waterways and locks have exceeded their 50-year design life. Everything from dilapidated levees to pipelines to railroads is past their expiration date."
The Economic Collapse
Are You Prepared For The Coming Economic Collapse And The Next Great Depression?
Just consider the following facts about America's infrastructure from the Pew Research Center website.....
*According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, more than 25 percent of America's nearly 600,000 bridges need significant repairs or are burdened with more traffic than they were designed to carry.
*According to the Federal Highway Administration, approximately a third of America's major roadways are in substandard condition - a significant factor in a third of the more than 43,000 traffic fatalities in the United States each year.
*The Texas Transportation Institute estimates that traffic jams caused by insufficient infrastructure waste 4 billion hours of commuters' time and nearly 3 billion gallons of gasoline a year.
*The Association of State Dam Safety Officials has found that the number of dams in the United States that could fail has grown 134% since 1999 to 3,346, and more than 1,300 of those are considered "high-hazard" - meaning that their collapse would threaten lives.
*More than a third of all dam failures or near failures since 1874 have happened in just the last decade.
*According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, aging sewer systems spill an estimated 1.26 trillion gallons of untreated sewage every single year, resulting in an estimated 50.6 billion dollars in cleanup costs.
The following are some additional facts from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce....
*A decaying transportation system costs our economy more than $78 billion annually in lost time and fuel.
*The United States must invest $225 billion per year over the next 50 years to maintain and adequately enhance our surface transportation systems. Currently, we're spending less than 40% of this amount.
*U.S. transit systems earned a D+ rating from the American Society of Civil Engineers. Transit funding is declining even as transit use increases faster than any other mode of transportation - up 21% between 1993 and 2002.
*Costs attributed to airline delays - due in large part to congestion and an antiquated air traffic control system - are expected to triple to $30 billion from 2000 to 2015.
*By 2020, every major U.S. container port is projected to be handling at least double the volume it was designed to handle.
*Throughout the United States, railroads are projected to need nearly $200 billion in investment over the next 20 years to accommodate freight increases.
America's aging infrastructure cannot handle the number of people that we have now. With the population of the United States expected to hit 420 million by 2050, there are serious questions about how the national infrastructure is going to hold up under such a strain.
Already the infrastructure in many areas of the United States is beginning to resemble that of a third world nation......
Infrastructure Report Card
Drinking Water D-
Hazardous Waste D
Inland Waterways D-
Public Parks and Recreation C-
Solid Waste C+
America's Infrastructure GPA: D
Estimated 5 Year Investment Need: $2.2 Trillion