The American society of civil engineers (ASCE) define infrastructure as the technical structure or network that allow proper functioning of the society. This includes sectors such as transportation, water, public facilities and energy. In 2009, the ASCE released a report card, which presents a short description of the different categories of American infrastructure, as well as, their performance in the industry. In the report card released in 2009, the ASCE revealed a lack of performance by all sections of American infrastructure, as all the sectors attained grades poor grades. The solid waste infrastructure section was the best scorer with a grade of C+, whereas bridges came in second with a grade of C. Recreational parks and rail scored a C-, and the energy sector took fourth position with a D+. The report card also gave the aviation, dams, schools, transit and hazardous waste sectors all scored the grade D, illustrating how these sectors have been performing poorly over the years. Drinking water, inland waterways, leeves, roads, and wastewater sectors came in last with as score of D-, thus making these sectors the worst performers in the industry.
Because roads, inland waterways, and leeves infrastructure sectors are the worst performing sectors in the industry. The ASCE recommends an immediate upgrade of these three sectors. However, the ASCE explains that upgrading these sectors will come with a hefty price, which will see the American economy invest a considerable amount of money for these upgrades. As the ASCE explains, the cost to upgrade roads will amount to $186 billion, $125 billion for drinking water and $100 billion to upgrade American leeves. The ASCE has drawn particular attention to the sector of bridges, as they believe that this sector is slowly declining as compared to other sectors of infrastructure. On the issue of bridges, the ASCE states that the typical bridge in America is expected to last for 50 years. However, the current average age of American bridges is 43 years, hence illustrating the declining state of bridges in the state. In addition to this, the ASCE explains that more than 26% of America’s bridges are what they term as “functionally obsolete”. This means that they are too structurally deficient to be in use by the American public, hence being under closure at most times.
Infrastructure has a direct impact on the personal, economic, and social lives of people, and for that reason, it needs proper maintenance at all times. The report card released by ASCE reveals a number of problems with America’s infrastructure that were not previously realized by many. The problems presented regarding hazardous waste and wastewaters are particularly disturbing because they threaten the health of Americans living in the state. Without realizing it Americans are living under life-threatening conditions that could see the loss of many lives, hence an increase in the mortality rate of Americans today. For that reason, immediate action should be taken so as to assure that Americans lives under safe and secure conditions. Just as the ASCE recommends, I believe that the solution to America’s infrastructural problem is the increment of federal leadership to address this problem, so as to promote infrastructural sustainability. Only through this, can Americans be assured of reduced risks with regards to infrastructure, hence maintain health and safety at all times.