The COVID-19 crisis has changed the way we live, work and interact with the world around us—but it has not changed our need for the essential resources that make modern life possible. In the last several weeks, Americans have learned more about the complex supply chains that surround us and the indispensable infrastructure they sustain.
One of the most essential resources is also one of the least well-known: Limestone.
In South Florida, we depend upon limestone products and other aggregates to build and maintain vital infrastructure and to support other essential industries.
- Maintaining Critical Infrastructure. Today, the safe and speedy delivery of food and medical supplies is more important than ever. These deliveries depend on a well-maintained transportation network, including bridges, roads and railways—all of which are supported by the Limestone Products Industry.
- Accelerating $2.1 billion in Critical Infrastructure Projects. Governor DeSantis announced that he will be accelerating infrastructure projects across Florida to take advantage of the significant reduction in traffic on Florida’s roadways. South Florida’s Limestone Products Industry supplies 50 percent of the aggregate used in FDOT infrastructure projects.
- Supply Chain Support. Not only does well-maintained infrastructure ensure the delivery of critical consumer goods, it also sustains other essential industries. The distribution of fuel, feed and raw materials often goes “unseen” by the public. However, our electrical grid, drinking water and food supply depend on it, which is why our industry was deemed “essential” by the Department of Homeland Security.
- Supporting Frontline Workers. While COVID-19 is causing many Americans to work from home, many essential personnel—including hospital workers and first responders—still require safe and well-maintained roads to reach their jobs.
- Maintaining Public Safety. All across South Florida, flood control structures—like canals, locks and levees—require maintenance, much of which depend on limestone products. These projects—which depend on our industry—simply cannot wait.
Keeping Workers Safe
The White House has issued guidance explaining that critical industries “have a special responsibility to maintain [their] normal work schedule.” We take this responsibility as seriously as we take our responsibility to keep our workers safe. Our industry—and the thousands of workers who support it—adhere to all health directives issued by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (the “CDC”) and are working harder than ever to meet the demands of these challenging times. We are well positioned to implement the CDC’s directives and social distancing protocols because our operations generally occur outdoors and on sites hundreds of acres in size, which are located outside of urban areas.
The Bottom Line
Our industry is taking extraordinary health precautions and working harder than ever to meet the demands of these challenging times. We supply a critical resource, at a critical time, and we stand ready to do our part to defeat this virus and maintain our way-of-life.