February 4, 2021


Goal is to demonstrate how crumbling infrastructure impacts lives, families, jobs, communities and the economy

Contact MSCI:
Kerrie Rushton
202-365-6338 or 847-485-3000

Rolling Meadows, Ill., Feb. 4, 2021 – The Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) announced a new continent-wide grassroots social media campaign to encourage residents of the United States and Canada to make their voices heard in favor of increased public and private investment in infrastructure.

The campaign can be found at www.build-now.org and by using #LetsBuildNow on social media platforms.

The website encourages individuals to join MSCI’s movement and to help the organization “build momentum, build awareness and build support for infrastructure investment.” It also allows users to share their stories by posting photos on social media using #letsbuildnow.

Edward J. Lehner, chair of MSCI’s Board of Directors and president and CEO of Ryerson, said:

“For decades now we have treated infrastructure investment as some kind casual choice that could be deferred indefinitely and addressed through superficial platitudes. Whether it is the unmistakable lessons of the global pandemic in how we respond to life and death, or a colossal landslide wiping out a large stretch of Highway 1 in Big Sur, or our climate, drinking water, energy, communications, mobility or commerce, the lack of infrastructure investment is a primary cause of many of society’s current problems. The good news is, if we finally have the will to act, we can fix what we’ve neglected for far too long. It is imperative we wait no longer to get started and ‘BUILD NOW.’ Please mark these words: after a period of sustained investment in infrastructure, we will begin to see meaningful improvements in public health, income inequality, shared prosperity, and overall quality of life for our families, our communities, and our businesses.”

According to MSCI’s Metals Activity Report, aluminum shipments in October of 2020 were 25 percent below their 2006 levels; steel shipments were down 40 percent.

“If North America prioritizes its infrastructure, the metals industry can rebound quickly,” said MSCI President and CEO M. Robert Weidner, III. “On the other hand, the failure to act will be felt in not just the metals industry, but in every segment of the population. We can—no, we must—work to encourage this investment now. It is difficult to see the future, but we must try. We cannot simply hope for a better tomorrow. We must build one.”

The website, www.build-now.org, points out:

  • Every $1 spent on infrastructure investments adds $3 to GDP growth, according to a University of Maryland study.
  • The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has given U.S. Infrastructure a grade of D+ for being “mostly below standard” and at “strong risk of failure.”
    • According to the ASCE report, the infrastructure investment gap costs households in the United States $3,100 a year, a number that is predicted to double in the next 20 years.
    • The cost to the U.S. economy from flight delays and cancellations (due to the poor state of U.S. airports) is more than $35 billion a year, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.
  • The Business Roundtable estimates “failing to close funding gaps across America’s infrastructure systems could lead to 2.5 million lost jobs in 2025 and 5.8 million lost jobs in 2040.”
  • According to the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, 47,000 U.S. bridges are currently “structurally deficient and in poor condition” and 235,000 U.S. bridges need “repair, replacement or major rehabilitation.” Vehicles cross these compromised structures 178 million times every day.” The next bridge disaster is a matter of “when” and not “if.”
  • The current cost of U.S. traffic congestion in fuel and lost time alone is nearly $180 billion a year according to the 2019 Urban Mobility Report.
  • Canada’s infrastructure is also in need of repair. According to the 2019 Canadian Infrastructure Report Card (CIRC), 40% of Canadian roads and bridges are in fair, poor or very poor condition. Nearly a third of Canada’s linear assets (such as watermains and sewers) and their public transit systems have the same inadequate rating.
    • As stated in the CIRC report’s Executive Summary, “the state of our infrastructure is at risk, which should be cause for concern for all Canadians.”

Learn more about www.build-now.org. Share on social media using #LetsBuildNow.

About MSCI

Founded in 1909, the Metals Service Center Institute is a nonprofit association based in Rolling Meadows, Ill., serving the industrial metals supply chain. It serves more than 265 members in more than 2,200 locations in North America. For more information, visit www.MSCI.org, MSCI’s online resource MSCI.org/Edge, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and connect with us on LinkedIn.