ENGINEERING TECH

5 Fascinating Facts About Concrete

CONLEY SMITH | June 8, 2021

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This week’s World of Concrete in Las Vegas is the first major trade show in the United States since the COVID pandemic changed the face of the convention and meeting business. For many, this is yet another sign of life slowly returning to normal for the construction industry.

If you’ve made the trek to this year’s WOC, you’re looking forward to it all—new products, cutting-edge tech, interactive workshops, hands-on training, and no doubt—the Bricklayer 500! This one-hour competition tests the speed and stamina to name the world’s greatest mason.

Whether you’re there in person or too busy in the field to attend, we join you in celebrating all things concrete this week. Here are some weird and wonderful facts about concrete, a strong and versatile material, that is used in everything from our kitchen countertops to the roads we drive on daily.

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The AES Corporation

AES is the Fortune 200 company engineering tomorrow’s energy solutions. Our 19,000 people fuel quality of life for tens of millions of customers in 17 countries across four continents, while creating the power generation and delivery systems that will enable a clean, unbreakable energy grid. Our 2016 revenues were $14 billion and we own and manage $36 billion in total assets.

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Evolving how strategic infrastructure projects secure planning approval in the UK

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The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has recently launched an operational review of the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIP) regime. This regime, established in 2008, was put in place to bypass local planning approval for projects that had a predominately national rather than a local impact. Over the last few years, the regime has taken a significant battering with ‘development consent’ (the granting of planning approval) for major infrastructure programmes being brought before court due to the corresponding National Policy Statement (used to determine if a project is in line with government ambition) being out of date with latest government policy. The most notable example being a third runway at Heathrow. This highlights that something is wrong with turning strategic policy intent into decisions on granting development consent.

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Infrastructure Policy Watch: measuring India's progress on SDGs, Canada consults on infrastructure priorities

Article | June 15, 2021

The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI), an Indian government policy commission, has published its SDG India Index and Dashboard 2020-21 report on progress against the UN Sustainable Development Goals at the state level in India, its third annual report. The main theme of this year’s report is ‘partnerships’, with NITI aiming to highlight the pace that can be achieved by working together in pursuit of the goals, as well as shine a light on the quiet but effective partnerships working away in the background. As part of this, the report sets out actions that have been taken across the 11 areas of the collaborative advantage framework to drive forward progress on SDG indicators. In the accompanying index, all Indian states and union territories are scored and ranked on each SDG, alongside progress over the year.

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Using Technology to Break Down Silos in Construction

Article | February 25, 2020

For those of us who have worked in the construction industry for many years, it is time we face up to an ugly reality... Our industry has always had a love affair with silos. Silos are endemic in the construction industry. The silos I’m referencing don’t hold grain. Instead, they represent the multiple subgroups assembled to complete a project. Most of us know this is not a good thing and deep down, we wish it wasn’t true. But, the ugly reality of our business is this - construction breeds and nurtures silos.

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Infrastructure Policy Watch: cost of climate change to UK finances, public views on New Zealand infrastructure

Article | July 13, 2021

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) in its latest Fiscal Risks Report has forecast the cost to the UK public finances from climate change (physical risks) and the transition to net-zero (transition risks) across a range of different scenarios. Describing the challenge, the OBR states: There are many other policy challenges to overcome, so the path to net zero can be expected to involve many policy levers on top of carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes, including bans and other regulations, and public subsidies and investment. These will all have economic and fiscal implications of one sort or another – either directly (via taxes and spending) or indirectly (via wider economic outcomes). Taking early action to achieve net zero would add 21% of GDP to public sector net debt by 2050, a smaller amount than that added by the Covid-19 pandemic. This amount comes from increased spending on net-zero investment, the loss of tax revenues (such as fuel duty), revenues from tax on carbon and other costs such as increased debt interest payments.

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Spotlight

The AES Corporation

AES is the Fortune 200 company engineering tomorrow’s energy solutions. Our 19,000 people fuel quality of life for tens of millions of customers in 17 countries across four continents, while creating the power generation and delivery systems that will enable a clean, unbreakable energy grid. Our 2016 revenues were $14 billion and we own and manage $36 billion in total assets.

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