Name: Teo Wei YwinMatriculation No.: E0202166Module: CE1102 Week 1 Summary Importance ofInfrastructure to Nations Infrastructure enables trading, business, theconnection of workers to their jobs, creation of jobs, boost for developingcommunities to occur. As the backbone of a healthy economy, it also protectsthe country from the rapidly changing and increasingly volatile naturalenvironment. Resource depletion, population growth, water,energy, food and biosecurity, urbanisation, poverty, and climate change allimply that the society now has to have sustainable infrastructure that is fitfor purpose. The development of countries need to contribute to the needs ofthe population without compromising the interests of future generations.
It hasto respect environmental limits, enhance lives for people and also contributesbroadly to the economy. Over the years, some developed nations havefocused on restoration projects. However, the scale of most restorationprojects is comparatively smaller than the degradation of the globalenvironment. The combination of infrastructure decay and the demand forenvironmental restoration has since raised infrastructure decommissioning as akey issue in environmental policy development in some developed nations,particularly in the United States and western Europe. Emerging Trends forInfrastructureWith political unrest rising in many parts ofthe world, the physical and cyber security of assets will only increase inimportance, particularly to individuals and users.
Amidst of the technological era, technological advanceswill continue to drive ef?ciency in infrastructure operations and should leadto better productivity, longer asset lives, fewer catastrophic failures andimproved safety. Thoughts: Innovative way of construction such asPre-fabricated Prefinished Volumetric Construction (PPVC) is an evidence forgame changing technologies occurring in the construction industry to boostproductivity to as high as 50% in terms of manpower and time-savings. InSingapore, it is predicted that by 2019, 35% of newly launched housing boardprojects will be built using PPVC.
Roles of Civil Engineers The roles of civil engineers are to minimisecost, deliver quality service and build sustainable infrastructure that haveacceptable environmental and socioeconomic impacts. Hence, systems thinking andholistic approach to projects are increasingly being valued. As the built environment is adapted to cope withclimate change, the low carbon economy, new technology and society’sexpectations, civil engineers will have to innovate (creating new products and processes). Infrastructure projects can be carried out topromote sustainability through:1. New and better systems(Using clean energy, co-generation plants, water reclamation plant)2.
Rehabilitation and expansion of existing systems (Replacement ofleaking water pipes, development of Newater distribution system)3. Restructuring existing systems (Deep Tunnel Sewage System, Newwindows and insulation for buildings)4. Better management ofexisting systems (Road congestion pricing, building management system) Context: Singapore Problem: With the continuous increase in our population,how are we going to make a long-term plan to accommodate people with no loss inthe quality of life, while in the meanwhile, think of new MRT lines and new busroutes. Consideration:Consequences of climate change such as flashfloods cannot be avoided due to land constraints, it is vital to build theinfrastructure to a certain level of capacity.
It is also pivotal to considerthe possibility of prolonged drought. As the climate has been changing rapidly, it isessential for authorities to take the necessary actions to reduce the risk offlooding in Singapore even without the conclusion from scientists. While developing infrastructure to boost theeconomy, countries must also take in concern of the people’s interests bycarrying out the infrastructure development via a responsible and sustainableway, such as taking caution not to deteriorate the natural environments. Thereis an immense potential for countries to collaborate to improve economic andsocial issues. Sharing of different infrastructure construction techniqueswould help to solve the common problems faced by many countries moreefficiently.
Thoughts: To cope with the rising population,there is an increase construction in concrete infrastructure. However, that alsoimplied that lesser water can be absorbed into the ground, leading to more frequencyof flash floods. Therefore, it is important for authorities to plan ahead andincrease capacity of the infrastructure and facilities to meet the risingchallenges. Context: The UnitedStates Background:In the upcoming years, infrastructure such asseaports, air hubs, freight rail, border crossings and track routes will growincreasingly importance to move the increase in exports efficiently daily. Infrastructure is also important in the era ofenergy diversification, to cater to specific types of energy and theirdifferent needs. For instance, natural gas needs new trucks, pipeline and railnetworks for transportation purposes, rooftop solar panels would requireinfrastructure for energy storage and the development of electricity grids.
Natural disasters drew attention to waterinfrastructure. The nation’s system is now being rebuilt to capture storm andrain water rather than diverting them away. A number of cities are using several marketmechanisms to finance new or existing transportation projects. Some techniquesinclude impact fees where land developers are assessed a charge to supportassociated public infrastructure improvements. The lease or sale of air rightsis another practice used to finance development around transit stations fordecades.
Some developments are around theGrand Central Station in New York, and in Boston and Dallas. Anothergrowing trend is the use of tax increment financing districts. The government also came up with the public-privatepartnerships (PPP), a complex agreement that collaborates both the publicsector and private enterprises to share the risk and costs of design,construction, maintenance, financing and operations. However, even PPP is not a one-size-fits-all solution,especially for green infrastructure or public parks that are not profitableenough.
Problem: 1. Increasing UrbanisationInfrastructure in urbanareas must be able to not only serve numerous new customers, but also providejob opportunities for the poorer, jobless residents.a. Inadequate and ageinginfrastructure Age is one of many factors that affect theperformance of infrastructure and its robustness against threats posed bycommon environmental conditions, extreme natural hazards, and terrorism.Infrastructure age often acts together with other factors such as design,maintenance, and operation in increasing the vulnerability of infrastructure tothese threats. The first step in understanding the role of agein infrastructure resiliency and vulnerability is an analysis of the causes offailure and the extent to which these causes can be related to age. It is wellknown that some of the more devastating bridge collapses were not due to agebut rather to combinations of design, maintenance, operation, and theenvironmental stresses.
Environmental factors can reinforce or perhapsoverride age as a contributor to infrastructure failure. Examples ofenvironmental factors often cited as affecting underground infrastructureinclude soil movement and pressure created by seasonal freeze-thaw cycles andattack by biological or chemical agents in the underground environment. Other environmental factors related more tohuman actions include construction interference involving inadvertent breakagesof utility lines (backhoe failure), failure to back fill supporting materialfor other infrastructure after construction, and breakages in water linesduring winter months that can cause freezing of water around other utilitieslines.
Infrastructures that are in poorer condition due to age can be morevulnerable to such environmental intrusions. As bridges age, it is common to post bridges forload limits and/or adjust the posted clearance of a structure. While theselimits are imposed with public safety in mind, these limits impede mobilitytherefore emergency response capabilities. In addition to the potentialdegradation of emergency response capability, a region could experiencenegative economic effects due to the inability of vehicles to traverse acertain route. These impacts are a threat to the security of the region becauseit makes an otherwise benign target significantly more attractive to theadversary. b. Poor development plansand growth 2.
Increasing EnvironmentalImpacta. Pollution from bothdomestic and industrial wasteb. Urban sprawlc. Catchment degradationd. Traffic congestione.
Air pollution Causes of Infrastructure Failure: 1. Hazardous LiquidDistribution Pipelines (External and internal corrosion)2. Natural Gas Transmission and Distribution3. Electric Power4. Bridges (It is well known that some of the more devastating bridgecollapses were not due to age but rather to combinations of design,maintenance, operation, and the environmental stresses.)5.
Dams (The designatedhazard level and the presence of an emergency action plan for dams areimportant in addressing vulnerabilities that may adversely affect the valuesfor measures of consequences, such as fatalities and injuries and economiclosses in case of a terrorist attack or a natural hazard.) Consequences:Although infrastructure increases economicgrowth in a region as accessibility and its attractiveness boost, ill-planningof infrastructure development can impede these development: 1. Inadequateinfrastructure maintenance results in an increase in costs to producers.2.
Infrastructure affects the type of social structure developed fora prolonged period.3. Infrastructuredevelopment and use have a prolonged impact on both the urban and naturalenvironments. Context: China Background:Infrastructureis the priority in China. It has transformed the China’s landscape and liftedthe economy by creating millions of jobs and demand for materials like cementand steel. It’s airports, highways and railways have unlocked potential to dobusiness in China and make the lives of the people more comfortable for theentire population. Problem:Infrastructuredebt is piling up. In Wenling, to fund the $1.
5 billion highway project, ituses the Industrial Fund. Traditionally, local government taps banks to fund ontheir projects. However, inIndustrial Fund, the city and the bank pull fund and the fund gets an indebtedcity-run business or a contract to do construction. Then the fund seeksindustrial investment from the public to pay for the labour by promising them ahigh return. The deal is supposed to pay for itself by creating economicgrowth, but it is just a new way of borrowing and shifting risk to the public.The government team with state-run banks and insurance companies to build. Thegovernment calls it using social capital; the people’s money.
Now thequestion increasingly is, how is the infrastructure construction paying for thework and how is it necessary?Thoughts: The government is coming up ways tofund the huge infrastructure projects that require huge capital. For the UnitedStates, the PPP; for China, the Industrial Fund. The governments recognise theimportance of infrastructure development, economically and socially. However,they must also keep in mind an additional factor in infrastructure development;its sustainability. Since most of the world is experiencing the problem ofdepleting resources and the increasing population, it is vital for civilengineers around the globe to share their game changing techniques to helpsolve the 21st century problems.