From serving our most basic needs to enabling our most ambitious ventures in trade and technology, infrastructure services support our well-being and development. Reliable water, sanitation, energy, transport, and telecommunication services are universally considered to be essential for raising and maintaining people s quality of life.
Yet millions of people, especially in low- and middle-income countries, are facing the consequences of unreliable electricity grids, inadequate water and sanitation systems, and overstrained transport networks. From floods and storms to earthquakes and landslides, natural hazards magnify the challenges faced by these fragile systems.
This book, Lifelines: The Resilient Infrastructure Opportunity, lays out a framework for understanding infrastructure resilience the ability of infrastructure systems to function and meet users needs during and after a natural shock and it makes an economic case for building more resilient infrastructure.
Building on a wide range of case studies, global empirical analyses, and modeling exercises, Lifelines provides an estimate of the impact of natural hazards on infrastructure. It looks at not only the repair costs but also the consequences for users from households to global supply chains. It also reviews available options to make infrastructure assets, systems, and users more resilient and better able to cope with natural disasters. Assessing the costs and benefits of these options, the book demonstrates the economic value of investing in more resilient infrastructure, especially in low- and middle-income countries.
Lifelines concludes by identifying five obstacles to resilient infrastructure and offering concrete recommendations and specific actions that can be taken by governments, stakeholders, and the international community to improve the quality and adequacy of these essential systems and services, and thereby contribute to more resilient and prosperous societies.