The funds will be primarily used to upgrade sewage plants and drinking water systems, as well as replacing aging infrastructure, throughout the state.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded $18.2 million to the state of Rhode Island to help finance improvements to water projects that are essential to protecting public health and the environment. The funds will be primarily used to upgrade sewage plants and drinking water systems, as well as replacing aging infrastructure, throughout the state.
The Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) program, administrated by the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank (RIIB), received $9.4 million. EPA’s funding provides low-interest loans for water quality protection projects to make improvements to wastewater treatment systems, control pollution from storm water runoff, and protect sensitive water bodies and estuaries.
The Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) program, administrated by the Rhode Island Department of Health (DOH) and RIIB, received $8.8 million. EPA’s funding provides low-interest loans to finance improvements to drinking water systems, with a particular focus on providing funds to small and disadvantaged communities and to programs that encourage pollution prevention as a tool for ensuring safe drinking water.
“This funding will pay for projects that improve water quality and protect drinking water across Rhode Island, and will provide benefits for decades to come,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “Clean drinking water and proper wastewater treatment are fundamental to protecting people’s health, but aging water infrastructure needs to be upgraded and repaired. EPA’s funding will help continue Rhode Island’s program to invest in drinking water and wastewater systems and protect people’s health.”
Since the beginning of this program, EPA has awarded approximately $443 million to Rhode Island for the construction, expansion and upgrading of clean water infrastructure resulting in decreased pollutant loadings to water bodies throughout the state.
As communities develop and climate patterns shift, water infrastructure needs are expected to grow. Green infrastructure is a cost-effective and resilient approach to water infrastructure needs that provides benefits to communities across the nation.