The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released guidance related to the use of funding included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) to repair, replace, and modernize the nation’s aging water infrastructure. The BIL invests $55 billion in water systems—the largest federal investment ever—including a little over $15 billion to fund the replacement of lead service lines and other lead remediation activities.
The guidance released today relates to the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds (SRFs), the vehicles through which much of the funding will pass through. The guidance includes a number of key priorities, including: increasing investment in disadvantaged communities; working quickly to replace lead service lines; making water infrastructure more resilient; including strong labor and domestic procurement provisions; and more.
In response to the release of the guidance, the BlueGreen Alliance released the following statement from Executive Director Jason Walsh:
“Access to safe drinking water is a basic necessity that our nation has failed to provide to too many communities for too long. With today’s guidance, the EPA has rightly prioritized getting lead service lines out of our water systems, investing in the health and safety of disadvantaged communities, and ensuring that workers—both at the job site and down the supply chain—see maximum economic benefits from this historic investment.”