Joe Biden

Remarks in a Meeting of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council

December 13, 2023

The President. Hey, everybody. How are you? Good to see you. Please stay seated. [Laughter] Pretty good, huh? [Laughter]

Well, look—hello, everybody. It's great to be here with so many members of our National Infrastructure Advisory Council.

Excuse my——

[At this point, the President cleared his throat.]

But, 2 years ago, I signed into law a once-in-a-generation investment in our Nation's infrastructure and—to fix our roads, railroads, bridges, ports, airports; remove every single lead pipe in the country; and extend high-speed internet, advance clean energy, and modernize the electric grid—energy grid. Already, we've announced over 40,000 projects in 4,500 communities all across our country.

And when folks see these big projects in their hometowns, when they see the cranes up in the air and the shovels in the ground, I really think—coming from an area that got shut down, up in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and then a steel mill in Claymont, Delaware—I think they—it brings them hope. It brings them hope and pride. It brings pride back to communities that were left behind for much too long. And it brings a sense of security as well.

That's why we are here today: to discuss how we can ensure that we invest in infrastructure that is secure, reliable, resilient for generations to come, no matter what.

Because it's not just about building infrastructure, it's about building better infrastructure, stronger infrastructure—infrastructure that can withstand 21st century challenges from climate change to cyber attacks to natural disasters to foreign threats and so much more.

So what does all this mean? It means that when a hurricane hits, power is back on within hours instead of days or weeks. It means that when the stormwaters surge, people don't lose access to clean water. It means that when any disaster strikes, families can still text, call, and e-mail to get help for their loved ones to see if they're okay.

And look, it also means that when cyber actors try to hack pipelines, ports, grids, and networks, they're detected and removed before they disrupt essential services. A lot of work.

And that's why last year I asked this Council to ensure that resilience is built into all of our infrastructure projects, including in critical sections like energy, communications, transportation, and health care.

Together, you delivered, especially on the key challenges. One, strengthening our water infrastructure. Two, boosting our resilience and expand our use of electricity—as we expand our use of electricity across our economy.

Today I'm looking forward to hearing about the new projects this Council will pursue in the coming years as well.

So thank you all for being here. I'm just going to ask the press to step out so we can begin our briefing.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Q. President Biden, did you watch Hunter this morning? Did you watch Hunter?

[Several reporters continued asking questions at once.]

Q. Did you watch Hunter? Did you watch Hunter?

NOTE: The President spoke at 1:21 p.m. in the Indian Treaty Room of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building.

Joseph R. Biden, Remarks in a Meeting of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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