Failure to Act: Closing the Infrastructure Investment Gap for America's Economic Future


For the American Society of Civil Engineers ASCE), EDR Group completed an update to their 2011/2012 "Failure to Act" studies on America's aging infrastructure.

Every four years, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) grades the current state of U.S. infrastructure on a scale of A through F, and since 1998, America’s infrastructure has earned persistent D averages.

As investment gaps continued, ASCE looked to EDR Group to answer a key question: how does the nation’s failure to act to improve the condition of U.S. infrastructure systems affect the nation’s economic performance?

EDR Group developed ASCE’s Failure to Act economic report series, assessing the economic consequences of continued underinvestment in surface transportation, water and wastewater, electricity, airports, inland waterways and marine ports infrastructure. First released in 2011 and 2012, the findings have been updated in the most recent May 2016 release entitled "Failure to Act: Closing the Infrastructure Investment Gap for America’s Economic Future."

The 2016 findings estimate that continued underinvestment in infrastructure will cost each U.S. family $3,400 a year over the next decade. Moreover, if the investment gap is not addressed by 2025, the economy is at risk for losing almost $4 trillion in GDP, resulting in a loss of 2.5 million jobs in 2025. The 2016 Failure to Act analysis indicates that the overall infrastructure gap has grown relative to the initial reports. Surface transportation, in particular, has seen a worsening investment gap, while investment in water and electricity infrastructure nationally has actually succeeded in closing the forecast gap somewhat since 2011-2012.

The Failure to Act Series relies on EDR Group’s experience integrating system performance, financial and economic data and modelling to identify the broader implications of infrastructure investment decision-making for national competitiveness.  

Final Report

Press Release

Failure to Act Series (2011-2013)



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