Wednesday, November 07, 2012
The American Society of Civil Engineers congratulates President Barack Obama on winning the 2012 Presidential election.
As America’s leading infrastructure voice, we look forward to continuing to work with President Obama and his administration on investing in America’s future. As we recently saw with Hurricane Sandy, the resilience of our national infrastructure system is vital for the safety and stability of all Americans, and one issue that crosses political lines.
For the U.S. economy to be the most competitive country in the world we need a first class infrastructure system—transport systems that move people and goods efficiently and at reasonable cost by land, water and air; transmission systems that deliver reliable, low-cost power from a wide range of energy sources, and water systems that drive industrial processes as well as the daily functions in our homes. Infrastructure is the foundation that connects the nation’s businesses, communities and people, driving our economy and improving our quality of life.
ASCE urges the administration and Congress to focus on policies that will create jobs and continue to grow the economy. ASCE will work with the new Congress and the President to rebuild and revitalize the very foundation of our national economy. Roads, bridges, levees, and dams not only provide security, but also allow businesses to move goods, reach global markets, grow their market share and create new jobs.
With the economy slowly recovering, infrastructure investment will help spark growth and continue our path towards prosperity. In 2009, ASCE gave America’s infrastructure a "D" grade and called for $2.2 trillion in investment over the coming five years. Obviously, this investment has not been made, and consequently, we have jeopardized our economy, our quality of life, and our very safety. We are pleased, however, that Congress this year passed and the President signed the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) legislation that reauthorized the nation’s surface transportation funding.
At the dawn of the 20th century, the investments to come in infrastructure were not even conceivable. Yet, we built a national highway system connecting families and businesses alike; we brought clean drinking water to homes and increased life expectancy nearly overnight; and, we created a national electric grid capable of withstanding the rigors of the digital age. We encourage the President to learn from our history and lead the charge in making the necessary investment to build an even stronger America.
ASCE will continue to serve its members and advance the engineering profession. Along those lines we urge the President and his administration to sharpen the country’s focus on the education of our children, particularly in the area of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. STEM education affords our children a path to a bright education and career, which will benefit our nation.
Our expertise affords us tremendous opportunity in discussing infrastructure issues with political leaders, and it is not a responsibility we take lightly. We look forward to working with the President and the new Congress to continue to grow our nation and build the foundation for a 21st century economy.
Greg E. DiLoreto P.E., P.L.S, D.WRE, is the President of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers represents more than 140,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America's oldest national engineering society. For more information, visit www.asce.org