It will help the US communities to improve their wastewater, drinking water and stormwater systems, mostly via innovative financing and by building resilience to climate change.

The center, which is part of the White House Build America Investment Initiative, will explore ways to increase financing of climate-resilient water infrastructure projects that integrate water efficiency, energy efficiency, water reuse and green infrastructure.

Communities will get support in developing sustainable sources of funding, particularly for stormwater activities.

It will collaborate with the US Department of Agriculture to build upon existing work in order to support small community water systems for technical, managerial and financial capacities.

EPA administrator Gina McCarthy said: "Infrastructure is central to the President’s plan to build on the progress the U.S. economy is making by creating jobs and expanding opportunity for all Americans.

"By modernizing the nation’s infrastructure we can protect our drinking water sources and enhance resilience to the impacts of climate change by avoiding financial and water supply losses from leaking pipes and reducing pollution from sewer overflows and wastewater discharges."

It is expected that the US needs over $600bn in the next 20 years to maintain and improve its water infrastructure.

Image: Construction workers check on progress inside a tunnel on a water infrastructure project in Washington, D.C. Photo: Courtesy of USEPA/Flickr.