According to this article in Information Week our national infrastructure, bridges, highways and, of course, the electrical grid are dire need of costly repair.

Enrique Santacana, head of U.S. operations for Swiss engineering company ABB , said the electrical grid has seen some improvements since the Northeast blackout of 2003, but much more investment will be needed.

“Here in the U.S. and other western economies like Western Europe, you have aging infrastructure that has to be replaced and for many years, we should have been replacing it and we didn’t and it is almost like catching up,” Santacana said.

The article also points out the west coast ports are suffering from transmission line congestion which makes required growth rates almost impossible.

Ports on the West Coast of the United States are stretched thin and approaching maximum capacity and need more investment to meet 10 percent annual growth rates, said Gerry Wang, chief executive of container shipping company Seaspan.

Rehabilitating and expanding ports runs into the millions of dollars and building new ports from scratch costs billions of dollars, something that might require a jump start from the government first, Wang said.

Centralization and privatization was neither desired nor requested by ratepayers in the beginning years of electrification. It required a full court press by private utilities to sell the United States people on the concept despite both empirical and statistical evidence that it was not in their best interests. Now the nation is paying the price and we all need to act quickly to insulate ourselves from a failing infrastructure.