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Archive for the ‘National’ Category

Threats on Tap: Widespread Violations Highlight Need for Investment in Water Infrastructure and Protections

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017
nrdc figure 1

This report expands our analysis beyond lead to examine all drinking water contaminants regulated under the SDWA. Much as Flint is not the only water system with lead problems, we have found that Lead and Copper Rule problems are far from the only widespread violations of drinking water rules. Our research shows that in 2015 alone, nearly 77 million people were served by more than 18,000 community water systems that violated at least one SDWA rule, and there were more than 80,000 violations of SDWA rules that year. These violations included exceeding health-based standards, failing to properly test water for contaminants, and failing to report contamination to state authorities or the public.

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Moving people and freight at 800 miles an hour? Really?

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017
Hyperloop Cutaway

Have you heard about “vehicles” that zip passengers to their destinations at speeds of nearly 800 miles per hour? At that speed, one could travel the 240 miles from Dallas to Austin in 15 minutes, make the 380-mile trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco in half an hour and the 235-mile trip between Miami and Orlando in 26 minutes. This mode of transportation is called hyperloop, and operates by ferrying passengers from one location to another through frictionless pneumatic tubes.

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Will the nation’s water infrastructure needs be overlooked again?

Thursday, May 4th, 2017
Gross Reservoir in Boulder County, Colorado. The reservoir is owned by Denver Water. Photo by Jeffrey Beall

Industry experts and government officials fear that when President Donald Trump’s proposed $1 trillion infrastructure plan is finally “laid out,” water infrastructure projects could largely be “left out.”…The president has already given preliminary indications that water projects are not likely to be ranked at the top of his priority list. That is more than unfortunate. Water resources are critical aspects of sustainability for the nation.

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A Jobs-Centric Approach to Infrastructure Investment

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017
Exhibit | Infrastructure Jobs Are Distributed Across the Nation

The Trump administration has proposed investing an extra $1 trillion in infrastructure to create millions of new jobs. To maximize the impact of such investment on employment, planners need to adopt a new jobs-centric approach that prioritizes investments in infrastructure projects on the basis of their job creation potential.

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Citizens, taxpayers, infrastructure contractors watch to see if there will actually be regulatory reform in Washington!

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017
Lifting regulations on the construction industry

Here’s a question to ponder. Does American industry have reason to complain? AGC officials blame decades of federal regulatory failures for construction contractors’ inability to hire new employees, remain competitive and to update and help rebuild the nation’s infrastructure. The regulatory restrictions, they say, create barriers that are harmful for industry, for American taxpayers and for the nation’s infrastructure and economy. They may be right!

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Infrastructure: An Investment Worth Making

Thursday, April 6th, 2017
Aerial Interchange - Infrastructure

America’s infrastructure is the safest investment our nation can make. But investing means more than tossing money at the problem. We need to streamline approval for construction projects, create more opportunities for public-private partnerships, and find a sustainable long-term funding mechanism to guarantee that projects can be completed down the road.

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Transportation Industry Reacts to Trump’s “Skinny Budget”

Monday, March 27th, 2017
America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again

When the Trump administration released the FY2018 budget proposal, called “America First: A Budget Proposal to Make America Great Again,” infrastructure stakeholders around the country responded immediately. Overall, the budget is characterized by an increase in defense spending and a decrease in lots and lots of other programs, especially in infrastructure-related departments like Energy, Environment and Transportation. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will release the final version in May. According to the LA Times Editorial Board, this budget reads like a “wish list of perennial GOP targets” mainly serving to “reveal the White House’s priorities,” rather than indicating actual policy changes.

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ACEC’S ENGINEERING INC. — Battery Storage Market Poised for Growth

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2017
Price of Lithium-Ion Batteries (2014–2016)

AMERICAN COUNCIL OF ENGINEERING COMPANIES (ACEC) Written by Gerry Donohue Battery storage is not yet ready for prime time. It is just too expensive. Although it has cost-effective applications in a few niches, such as island grids or locations where technical constraints require a non-wired solution, it doesn’t pencil out for large-scale energy storage. That […]

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Making the Grade: Dams and Levees

Thursday, March 16th, 2017
Making the Grade: Dams and Levees

Dams and levees play integral roles in communities. Dams create reservoirs for our water supply, protect us from floods, and provide renewable energy, while levees reduce the risk from devastating flooding events. ASCE’s 2017 Infrastructure Report Card graded dams a D and levees a D. Find out what can be done at https://www.infrastructurereportcard.org/.

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Guest on The Infra Blog: Norma Jean Mattei, 2017 President, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)

Thursday, March 16th, 2017
Norma Jean Mattei on The Infra Blog

“I think one of the problems is we have gotten into the habit of just waiting until things break, and when you have many sectors at a “D,” it just takes one major event to shut something down and have something fail. And then we throw a lot of money at it. But that’s not a wise way of handling things, because when you’re dealing with a disaster, you’re throwing four times the money at what is now broken, instead of maintaining something in a condition that’s at least average condition.”

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