The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a new web-based portal, the Water Finance Clearinghouse, to help communities in taking financing decisions in their drinking water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure needs.
The Water Finance Clearinghouse will have a searchable database, where more than $10bn in water funding sources and more than 550 resources, supporting local water infrastructure projects will be made available to communities.
Developed by EPA’s Water Infrastructure and Resiliency Finance Center, it will also act as a one-stop-shop for all community water finance needs by integrating and expanding its existing databases.
EPA stated that there are aging or inadequate water infrastructure across several communities in the country. About 240,000 main breaks occur and at other places, billions of gallons of raw sewage is discharged into local surface waters from aging conveyance systems.
Hence, a need for communities to access efficient and up-to-date water finance information was felt and this gave rise to the Water Finance Clearinghouse. Water finance information can help communities find information to rehabilitate or replace their water infrastructure.
On the other hand, the new portal can also give local decision makers an opportunity to search for funding sources for water infrastructure along with resources including reports, webpages and webinars on financing mechanisms and approaches that can help communities access capital to meet their water infrastructure needs.
EPA Office of Water deputy assistant administrator D. Lee Forsgren said: “Every day, Americans depend on water infrastructure to ensure that their drinking water is safe and that local waterways stay clean.
“Investing in water infrastructure sustains local economies by creating jobs, protecting public health, and increasing quality of life. EPA’s Clearinghouse is a vital portal that helps connect communities with the information and tools they need to finance much needed water infrastructure improvement projects.”