Henry Petroski reflects on the decline in infrastructure in the US. over the past three decades due to inadequate funding and government negligence. Some estimates indicate that each day 650 water mains fail in the US, with seven billion gallons of water being lost through leaks, resulting in 16% waste of clean drinking water. The National Council on Public Works Improvement (NCPWI) report published in 1988 made qualitative and quantitative assessments of the overall infrastructure and its requirements. The council sought the government, private industry and the public to make a national commitment to make improvements in the country's infrastructure. The ASCE issued its own 'Report Card for America's Infrastructure,' in 1998, which refined and extended some of the categories presented in the NCPWI report. The US President Obama's speech included the mention of stimulus package of $30 billion, but some observers considered it insufficient to the task.
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