EPA Announces New Funding for Water Infrastructure Projects

Funding could aid over $11 billion in infrastructure projects nationwide

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced last week the availability of funding that could provide as much as $5.5 billion in loans, which could leverage over $11 billion in water infrastructure projects through the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program.

Prospective borrowers seeking WIFIA credit assistance must submit a letter of interest by July 6.

“This WIFIA funding will spark new investments to repair our nation’s crumbling water infrastructure,” says EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “EPA will play a key role by incentivizing states, municipalities, and public-private partnerships to protect public health, fix local infrastructure problems, create jobs, and provide clean water to communities.”

The WIFIA program received $63 million in funding in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018, which was signed into law by President Donald Trump on March 23. This more than doubles the program’s funding from 2017. Leveraging private capital and other funding sources, these projects could support $11 billion in water infrastructure investment and create more than 170,000 jobs.

 Established by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014, the WIFIA program is a federal loan and guarantee program at EPA that aims to accelerate investment in the nation’s water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental loans for regionally and nationally significant projects.

WIFIA credit assistance can be used for a wide range of projects, including:

  • Drinking water treatment and distribution projects;
  • Wastewater conveyance and treatment projects;
  • Enhanced energy efficiency projects at drinking water and wastewater facilities;
  • Desalination, aquifer recharge, alternative water supply, and water recycling projects; and
  • Drought prevention, reduction, or mitigation projects

 EPA will evaluate proposed projects described in the letters of interest using WIFIA’s statutory and regulatory criteria. Through this competitive process, EPA will select projects that it intends to fund and invite them to continue to the application process. 

In 2017, for WIFIA’s inaugural round, EPA invited 12 projects in nine states to apply for more than $2 billion in loans.

For more information about WIFIA, visit www.epa.gov/wifia.  


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