Infrastructure investment gap could cost U.S. economy $4tr and 2.5m jobs, study warns

By on 17/05/2016 | Updated on 04/02/2022

The U.S. government’s failure to invest in infrastructure could cost the country’s economy almost $4tr in GDP, and 2.5m jobs by 2025, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has warned in a new report.

Continued underinvestment in infrastructure will cost each U.S. family $3,400 a year over the next decade, according to ASCE’s Failure to Act: Closing the Infrastructure Investment Gap for America’s Economic Future report, published last week.

Greg DiLoreto, chair of ASCE’s Committee for America’s Infrastructure, said that  “poor infrastructure means more congestion on our roadways, broken water lines and power outages, and an inability to get our goods to market.”

“From lost time, to inconvenience, to spending money to fix our cars or a flooded basement, it’s a very real cost that we’re paying.”

The report looks at five different sectors:  surface transportation; water and wastewater; electricity; airports and inland waterways; and marine ports infrastructure.

The analysis says that in the years since 2011, various state actions along with some federal funding measures have helped stabilise the infrastructure gap, but the overall picture remains – underinvestment is negatively affecting the nation’s economy.

The most significant gap, according to the report, is in the transportation sector, where an estimated additional $1tr is needed across the network during the next decade.

“Infrastructure is our economic backbone,” DiLoreto said. “This report again shows us that every day we delay, our infrastructure goes from needing to be repaired to needing to be replaced.”


Click here to read the full report

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About Winnie Agbonlahor

Winnie is news editor of Global Government Forum. She previously reported for Civil Service World - the trade magazine for senior UK government officials. Originally from Germany, Winnie first came to the UK in 2006 to study a BA in Journalism & Russian at the University of Sheffield. She is bilingual in English and German, and, after spending an academic year abroad in Russia and reporting for the Moscow Times, Winnie also speaks Russian fluently.

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