Demand in the US for geosynthetics is forecast to increase 6.6 percent per year to 1.3 billion square yards in 2017, valued at $2.9 billion, spurred by improved spending on the construction of structures and roads. Gains in geosynthetics demand will also benefit from increased market penetration, as engineers continue to become more aware of the long term cost and performance advantages of these products at the expense of traditional geotechnical solutions. These and other trends, including market share and product segmention, are presented in US Geosynthetics, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.
The construction and transportation infrastructure markets together accounted for 60 percent of total demand for geosynthetics in 2012. Historically, construction was the largest market in area terms; however, it slipped from the leading position prior to 2012 due to the severe downturn in construction spending between 2007 and 2011. Going forward, the construction market is projected to post the most rapid gains through 2017. The transportation infrastructure market was the largest in 2012 and will provide opportunities for a number of geosynthetics as spending on highways accelerates somewhat through 2017. Geogrids are among the geosynthetics expected to benefit from improved spending on transportation infrastructure.
Geotextiles will remain the largest product segment, accounting for 69 percent of total area demand in 2017. Geotextiles benefit from versatility; these products are used in a wide range of markets and applications. Because two-thirds of geotextile sales in area terms in 2012 were in the transportation infrastructure and construction markets, improvements in construction and highway spending will boost growth.
Demand for geomembranes, the largest geosynthetics product segment in value terms in 2012, is forecast to achieve below average gains in area terms through 2017, primarily due to their significant use in the relatively mature landfill market. Nevertheless, favorable opportunities for geomembranes will emerge in coal ash containment and water impoundment applications at shale oil and gas sites, although both will rise from small 2012 bases. More application-specific products -- e.g., geogrids, geonets, geosynthetic clay liners, and geofoams -- are expected to post the fastest gains in demand, although also from small bases.
The Freedonia Group is a leading international business research company, founded in 1985, that publishes more than 100 industry research studies annually. This industry analysis provides an unbiased outlook and a reliable assessment of an industry and includes product segmentation and demand forecasts, industry trends, demand history, threats and opportunities, competitive strategies, market share determinations and company profiles.