The National Waterways Foundation recently published a fascinating study, ‘An Evaluation of Economic Impacts and the Potential Effects of Infrastructure Investment.’ The study was prepared by the University of Kentucky and the University of Tennessee. Researchers finished the two-year report in November of 2014.
The study first evaluates the total economic importance of commercial inland navigation to the country in navigation’s present form and assumes only sufficient investment to maintain current system performance. This is followed by a scenario that considers the economy-wide impacts of proposed improvements to navigation system capacity and performance under traffic demands that are similar to current freight flows. Investing in our nation’s waterways infrastructure not only secures a competitive advantage for American-made goods in an international market but also provides family-wage jobs to boost our overall economy.