EPA Recognizes ReHarvest Partners for Excellence and Innovation in Financing Projects to Improve Iowa Water Quality
Two rural Kansas water infrastructure projects receive honorable mentions
LENEXA, KAN. (FEB. 16, 2022) - Today, at a virtual roundtable with state and community representatives, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) honored 49 water infrastructure projects for excellence and innovation within the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) and Drinking Water SRF programs.
ReHarvest Partners, a financial management group, was recognized for excellence in innovative financing in Iowa. The city of Westmoreland, Kansas, and Kansas’ Public Wholesale Water Supply District No. 25 (servicing Douglas, Franklin and Osage counties) both received honorable mentions for recent water infrastructure projects.
“Through the power of partnership, EPA has helped states finance billions of dollars in water infrastructure investments for more than 30 years,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox. “Today, we celebrate projects that inspire continued partnership and innovation in addressing clean water and drinking water infrastructure needs in communities across the country.”
“We applaud these water infrastructure projects for forward thinking and collaboration within our Heartland communities,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Meg McCollister. “We look forward to working with our state partners to deliver even more water upgrades in 2022 and beyond through Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments in our regional State Revolving Funds.”
Iowa’s ReHarvest Partners was recognized for excellence in innovative financing for its ReHarvest Pay for Success project. The ReHarvest Pay for Success project was made possible through a $7.5 million investment from Iowa’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund. As an alternative to paying farmers to implement conservation practices, ReHarvest Partners pays Iowa farmers $20 to $40 per acre for the verified environmental outcomes they produce. These outcomes include nutrient capture that improves water quality.
The city of Westmoreland, Kansas, received an honorable mention for its 2019 Rock Creek Stream Bank Stabilization project. After a springtime flooding event caused stream bank erosion that threated the city’s wastewater lagoon site, Westmoreland collaborated with state and federal entities to stabilize the stream bank and prevent further erosion. These actions increased the integrity of the city’s wastewater facilities and protected Rock Creek from future erosion and sedimentation that can affect water quality.
Kansas’ Public Wholesale Water Supply District No. 25 (PWWSD) received an honorable mention for its New Regional Water Supply System project. PWWSD was formed in 2006 when two rural Kansas water districts combined, and it includes Douglas, Franklin and Osage counties. In 2015, PWWSD identified current and long-term water availability issues. The project received $22.4 million from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment State Revolving Loan Fund for three well fields, a water-softening treatment plant, main transmission lines, a pump station, and storage.
The SRFs are EPA-state partnerships that provide communities with a permanent, independent source of low-cost financing for a wide range of water quality and drinking water infrastructure projects. Since their inception, EPA’s SRFs have provided over $189 billion in financial assistance to nearly 43,000 water quality infrastructure projects and 16,300 drinking water projects across the country.
In 2022, EPA will allocate EPA will allocate $7.4 billion to states, tribes, and territories, with nearly half of this funding available as grants or principal forgiveness loans that remove barriers to investing in essential water infrastructure in underserved communities across rural America and in urban centers. The 2022 allocation is the first of five years of nearly $44 billion in dedicated EPA SRF funding that states will receive through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
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