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EPA Administrator Regan announces $168 million in water investments

  • EPA Administrator Regan announces $168 million in water investments
    EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan.

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U.S. EPA
United States Environmental Protection Agency. The mission of EPA is to protect human health and the environment.
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U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael S. Regan joined Silicon Valley Clean Water Commission Chair Alicia Aguirre, Oro Loma Board President Rita Duncan, and other local officials to announce Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loans totaling $168 million for water system upgrades in Redwood City and Alameda County, California. 

“Investing in water infrastructure has proven time and again to deliver a multitude of benefits, including building climate and drought resilient water systems, safeguarding public health, and creating good paying jobs," said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “Today's announcements embody the promise of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, which will broaden the scope of these powerful benefits for communities across the nation.”

At an event hosted by Silicon Valley Clean Water (SVCW), Administrator Regan announced two WIFIA loans totaling $143 million to SVCW as well as a $25 million WIFIA loan to the Oro Loma Sanitary District. Construction and operation of the WIFIA-financed projects at SVCW and Oro Loma Sanitary District are expected to create more than 2,500 jobs. Additionally, the savings realized from EPA’s WIFIA loans can be passed on to customers through continued service improvements from additional infrastructure investments or greater rate stability throughout the lives of the loans.

Nationally, EPA's 55 WIFIA loans are providing $10.6 billion in credit assistance to help finance nearly $24 billion for water infrastructure while creating approximately 58,000 jobs and saving ratepayers nearly $4.6 billion.

Silicon Valley Clean Water

EPA’s two WIFIA loans to SVCW will help finance wastewater system rehabilitation projects. A loan of $69 million will support a sewer conveyance upgrade project and a loan of $74 million will support upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant. Together, these projects are enhancing innovative practices and technologies to improve system operations and bring the utility to 100% self-generating power. EPA’s WIFIA financing will save SVCW approximately $133 million. The project is estimated to create 2,400 jobs during construction and operation. These WIFIA loans are in addition to a $218 million WIFIA loan to SVCW to support the Regional Environmental Sewer Conveyance Upgrade (RESCU) Program.

“We are immensely grateful and proud of the partnership SVCW has with EPA, a collaboration that has allowed SVCW to lead the industry with innovative and sustainable capital improvement projects,” said Silicon Valley Clean Water General Manager Teresa Herrera. “We look forward to our continued alliance by advancing our shared commitment to the protection of public health and our environment for generations to come.”

Oro Loma Sanitary District

EPA's WIFIA loan to Oro Loma Sanitary District will support the Oro Loma Sewer Collection System Pipeline Rehabilitation and Replacement project, which will provide customers with more reliable wastewater service while increasing protection of the community and nearby waterways from sewer overflows. By improving system reliability, the project will provide significant annual resource savings. The community will benefit from 1.3 million gallons of potable water as well as a reduction in 1,000 hours of maintenance costs and over $100,000 in operating costs each year. EPA’s WIFIA financing will save the district approximately $6 million while project construction and operation are expected to create an estimated 160 jobs.

“Oro Loma is pleased to partner with WIFIA to fund these much needed sewer improvements,” said Oro Loma Board President Rita Duncan.  “Through our partnership, we will renew the infrastructure in our community, provide jobs to local tradespeople, and help protect the health of the San Francisco Bay.”

Background on WIFIA

Established by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014, the WIFIA program is a federal loan and guarantee program administered by EPA. WIFIA's aim is to accelerate investment in the nation's water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental credit assistance for regionally and nationally significant projects. The WIFIA program has an active pipeline of pending applications for projects that will result in billions of dollars in water infrastructure investment and thousands of jobs.

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