WWEMA has long supported the creation of sustainable financing mechanisms to build, maintain, and replace our nation’s drinking water and wastewater infrastructure. These needs have been well-documented by water industry organizations as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Capital needs and costs are impacted by numerous factors including pricing; asset age and condition, demographic shifts, security and climate impact issues, regulatory requirements and enforcement; energy and water efficiency needs; and federal, state, and local policies and regulations that impact project costs.
WWEMA advocates for full-cost pricing at the utility level; improved water and energy efficiency; creation of asset management plans; eliminating the volume cap on private activity bonds; increasing funding for the drinking water and clean water State Revolving Loan Fund (SRF) programs and the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program; increased use of public-private-partnerships; the use of innovative funding mechanisms; eliminating barriers and resistance to new technologies; and the elimination of requirements such as American Iron and Steel (AIS) criteria that increase product and project costs.
- Buried No Longer: Confronting America’s Water Infrastructure Challenge: American Water Works Association February 2012 report that analyzes the cost of repairing and expanding the U.S.’s drinking water infrastructure.
- Clean Watersheds Needs Survey (CWNS) – 2012 Report & Data: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s sixteenth clean water needs survey report that estimates total capital wastewater and stormwater treatment and collection needs of $271.0 billion over a twenty-year period.
- Drinking Water Infrastructure Needs Survey and Assessment – Fifth Report to Congress: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s fifth national assessment of public water system infrastructure needs shows a total twenty-year capital improvement need of $384.2 billion from January 1, 2011, through December 31, 2030, for water systems to continue to provide safe drinking water to the public.
- Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency program authorized under the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) of 2014 to provide low interest rate financing for the construction of water and wastewater infrastructure. Funded projects must be nationally or regionally significant and must be reasonably anticipated to cost no less than $20 million.
- U.S. Water Alliance: As a U.S. Water Alliance member, WWEMA supports the concept of One Water, One Future.