Six Infrastructure Projects for a Trump Administration
by Roy Morrison
The Trump proposal for a ten year trillion dollar investment in infrastructure supported by an 82% tax credit has the potential to help build an efficient, productive and low polluting 21st century economy.
The focus is on user or fee based projects that would pay for themselves once operating, paying taxes on revenue and income taxes on wages. Using a public private partnership model supported by the tax credit would facilitate both private investment and oversight over long term maintenance and performance.
Public private partnerships mean that investors will write checks to finance vetted projects and not just dip into a tax payer funded slush fund. This is the way to avoid building bridges to nowhere. Projects are funded by private capital. Completed projects are meant to be self-sustaining and built to highest standards. They must pass the no boondoggle test. That’s the value of public private partnerships done right.
Several choices for needed, innovative, and profitable investment are clear.
First, is national high speed internet that can both employ new fiber optic cable and take advantage of existing capacity in underused copper electric lines. ATT is already at work on Project Air Gig using low cost plastic antennas installed on power lines.The goal is for all Americans everywhere to be linked by high speed internet connectivity. The economic benefits are enormous and the system will clearly be profitable.
Second, is building a network of regional and continental Supergrid power lines using High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) . This will allow power to be moved from where it is generated to where it is needed 24 hours a day. Our cars, factories, heating and cooling in the 21st century will be electric. Electric use will soar and pollution decrease. A small charge for transmission added to electric bills makes the system highly profitable. The wind in the midwest and off shore, the sun in the deserts has potential to easily provide all our electric power generated here with zero fuel cost and zero pollution.
Third, is to install a national electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Electric cars use energy at a rate equivalent to a $1.00 a gallon or less compared to gasoline. Installing a charging station at each gas station will generate enormous revenues if there are lots of electric cars that will be become irresistible if there are charging stations.This will be an enormously profitable venture.
Four, is the driverless car infrastructure that is next, but that is not yet commercial under the tax credit model.
Five, is to build national high speed rail that will move people swiftly and safely long distances at seeds of 200 miles per hour. High speed rail can pick up and deliver people from city centers and not waste many hours traveling to distant airports and slash energy use and pollution.
Six, is building housing in our cities using new manufactured housing techniques. This is a program for neighborhood redevelopment for affordable housing to be owned by individuals and by cooperative groups with a stake in their neighborhoods. Building homes in factories in sections to be assembled on site cuts costs and creates jobs.It will revitalize cities, reduce homelessness, and reduce commuting and slash pollution. This is certainly in Donald Trump’s wheelhouse.
Participation in all these projects will allow American companies to compete in a burgeoning international marketing in all these areas, or be left behind while the world embrace 21st century technologies and 21st century solutions.
Roy Morrison’s latest book Sustainability Sutra is forthcoming from Select Books in NY, March 7, 2017.
High Speed Internet
How AT&T plans to deliver cheap, high-speed internet over power lines
The Coming Super Grid Build-Out — Investing Daily
Can the U.S. develop a supergrid before China
Building the 21st Century Transmission Super Grid: Technical and Political Challenges for Large Scale Renewable Energy Production in the U.S.
Electric Vehicle Infrastructure
Obama Administration Announces New Actions To Accelerate The Deployment of Electrical Vehicles and Charging Infrastructure
Charging Infrastructure for Plug-in Electric Vehicles | Overcoming Barriers to Deployment of Plug-in Electric Vehicles
Utility Involvement in Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure: California at the Vanguard
Factory and Site-Built Housing: A Comparison for the 21st Century
Understanding Today’s Manufactured Housing (PDF)
Innovations in Manufactured Homes
Technology Roadmapping for Manufactured Housing (PDF)
Cost-Optimized Attic Insulation Solution for Factory-Built Homes
What Are Manufactured Homes?
Why Manufactured Homes?