Across the United States (U.S.), organisations are looking to join forces with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to grow their local economies while also improving water infrastructure. According to WaterWorld, EPA’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) programme has received “letters of interest” from numerous potential borrowers spanning 19 states.
“The infrastructure needs of our nations and communities are broader than just roads and bridges,” EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, said. “Improvements are needed to address drinking and wastewater infrastructure, and EPA’s WIFIA programme offers opportunities to provide credit assistance to spur innovative investments that address water infrastructure needs.”
The WIFIA programme, a new federal loan and guarantee programme at the EPA, was set up by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014 with the goal of speeding up investments in the nation’s water infrastructure by offering long-term supplement credit assistance at a low cost for significant projects on the regional and national levels.
For the fiscal year 2017, Congress has awarded the programme with US$25 million in funds, making room for US$1.5 billion in loans, and driving US$3 billion in projects to replace, repair, and rehabilitate aging water infrastructure as well as construct new infrastructure for desalination and drought alleviation, among others.