Innovative Financing for Green Infrastructure
Financing green infrastructure is critical to taking projects from planning to implementation and beyond, including sustaining operations and maintenance. This 90-minute webcast provides an overview of financing strategies and highlights a community that leveraged Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) resources for a flood mitigation project that provided multiple economic, environmental, and social benefits.
Session 1—An Overview of Green Infrastructure Financing
Jennifer Cotting, Research Associate, Green Infrastructure, Environmental Finance Center (EFC), University of Maryland
Green infrastructure plans are important for guiding land use and resource management decision-making, but plans cannot be implemented without a "how-to-pay" strategy. In this session, the University of Maryland EFC discusses the critical elements of successful green infrastructure finance strategies, as well as some emerging innovations in the green infrastructure finance field.
Session 2—Partnering To Transform a Watershed Plan into a Watershed Reality: The Bee Branch Watershed Flood Mitigation Project
Deron Muehring, Civil Engineer, City of Dubuque, IA
This presentation covers how incorporating green infrastructure into a flood mitigation project can provide additional benefits, including addressing flood mitigation and improving the environment. The $180-million project to mitigate the effects of flash flooding within the Bee Branch watershed also benefited local mobility; created a regional tourist attraction; improved water quality; and created a healthy aquatic habitat for fish, animals, and people.
Session 3—Water Resource Restoration Sponsored Projects
Lori Beary, SRF Coordinator, Iowa Finance Authority
This presentation discusses using the CWSRF program to finance nonpoint source projects by combining them with SRF-funded infrastructure projects. By lowering the interest rate on traditional CWSRF infrastructure loans and allowing communities to use that inevitable interest to pay for water quality projects, the Iowa Finance Authority is providing the state’s communities with a new source of funding for nonpoint source projects.
Jennifer Cotting, a research associate for green infrastructure at the University of Maryland’s EFC, was originally hired in 2004. She manages the EFC's green infrastructure program, which spans large landscape conservation and habitat management, as well as urban land use and stormwater management applications of green infrastructure. Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Marymount University and a Master of Science degree in sustainable development and conservation biology from the University of Maryland.
Deron Muehring has a Bachelor of Arts degree in physics from St. Cloud State University and a Master of Science degree in civil and environmental engineering from Marquette University. He has been employed as a civil engineer with the city of Dubuque, Iowa, since 1998. In that time, he has worked on water resource issues and projects and served as the de facto project manager for the Bee Branch Watershed Project.
Lori Beary is the community development director and SRF program coordinator for the Iowa Finance Authority. She has been with the authority since October 2000, managing the conduit tax-exempt bond program, the Iowa Private Activity Bond Cap, and the Iowa SRFs for Clean Water and Drinking Water. Lori earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Grinnell College and a Master of Science degree in economics from Iowa State University.