Blog Posts

Diving into the Digital Divide

08 Apr 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

The word infrastructure can mean different things to different people. To some, infrastructure refers to the roads, railways, and other transportation systems that connect us. To others, it is the schools, hospitals, and physical buildings that are occupied by organizations that serve society. Both are correct, given that the word…

The State of America’s Roadways

05 Apr 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

Potholes. Steel plates. Grooved pavement. Faults in our roads seem to be increasingly common, as does the traffic from road work. The roadways that connect our homes, businesses, cities, and states are a crucial part of America’s infrastructure, but seem to be in terrible condition. Is it really as bad…

How Do Pipelines Relate to Railways and Roads?

31 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

The relationship between pipelines and land is a central point of discussion whenever pipelines are in the headlines. Those who oppose pipelines may argue that pipelines infringe on private land, and those in favor of pipelines may point to the legal process designed to protect private citizens’ land from being…

Do You Know What’s Below? A look into Modern Roots March

24 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

    The ground we walk on is covered with asphalt for roads, concrete for sidewalks, and is naturally decorated with grass, flowers, shrubs, and trees. Intermingled within are telephone polls, electricity wires, buildings, and other structures requiring power. We all understand that natural organisms have roots that ground them…

How Much Land is Needed to Keep America Powered?

16 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

  Our 3.8 million square-mile nation uses its space for a lot of purposes. About 50 percent of U.S. land is used for agriculture. Roads run for over 4 million miles across the country. Forests occupy nearly 300,000 square miles. But this vast and dynamic country requires abundant energy to…

How Drones May Solve Climate Change

04 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

With a problem as large in scope as global climate change, the solution may need to be pretty big. But how about something the size of a bird? Drones are compact but powerful tools. Already, we are seeing them complete tasks as diverse as aiding roof inspections, fighting fires, or…

Are Pipelines Safe?

02 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

  o one could be blamed for having the wrong impression of pipelines. Views tend to align with politics, and media coverage often casts these silent transport methods in one extreme light or another. The facts about pipelines are quite revealing, but there is a lot of data to discuss…

Modern Life Is Rooted in Infrastructure

01 Mar 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

When you see a tree, you know it has roots. When you pull weeds, you aim to get all of those roots spread across the whole garden just beneath the ground. What you may not think of quite as intuitively is that modern infrastructure has roots too. This month, Aii…

Learn About Drones from Drone Pilots

15 Feb 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

 What comes to mind when you think of drones? Advancements in technology for the betterment of society? Unmanned aircrafts used to spy on private citizens? If you aren’t in the drone-world, you may identify with the spy-movie nature of 24/7 drone surveillance. If you’re a drone fanatic, you may…

How Close Are We to a Smart Grid?

12 Feb 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

The power pulsing into your home right now probably comes courtesy of an antiquated system of power plants and transmission lines thought up while horse and buggies were still common on the streets. Even with the advent of the Internet age, we largely still use this one-way power network, and…

Climate Control Requires Fossil Fuels, For Now

22 Jan 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

Forgotten, it seems, in much of the discussion of climate change is the phrase “climate controlled.” This seemingly oxymoronic word pairing usually refers to buildings, which use heating systems and air conditioning to keep what is inside insulated from whatever occurs outside. Clearly climate control does not refer to humanity’s…

Three Stages of Pipeline Opposition and What Each Gets Wrong

14 Jan 2021, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Analysis, Blog Posts

  generally comes in three key stages. Each stage has its merit, but opposition to natural gas pipelines in many instances leads to negative consequences. To separate fact from fiction and dive deeper into the issue, this policy blog explores some of the broader considerations for natural gas pipelines and…

Pipeline Safety Agency Reauthorized in Year-End Omnibus

22 Dec 2020, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

With the year-end omnibus budget and coronavirus stimulus package, the federal government’s top pipeline safety agency was reauthorized. The down-to-the-wire omnibus deal included the reauthorization, which was 447 days overdue, as the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) authorization expired in September of 2019. Due to federal rules and…

A Growing Prospect for a Greener Future

14 Dec 2020, Posted by bdierker in All Posts, Blog Posts

Since the term ‘climate change’ entered into society’s collective lexicon in the 1990s, the issue has steadily amassed political and societal relevance. Now, with many projected consequences of climate change looming, scientists are investigating innovative solutions to avert crisis — one of the more surprising of which is algae sequestration….