As part of the White House Build America Investment Initiative, the Environmental Protection Agency launched the Water Infrastructure and Resiliency Finance Center (WIRFC). Unveiled last month, the new finance center is setup to increase funding for climate resilient water infrastructure projects. With a projected $600 billion infrastructure spending shortfall, the EPA hopes the new finance center will help close the gap in infrastructure needs by promoting further investment.
The Finance Center plans to build on the State Revolving Fund program, but use innovative new financing tools to promote public-private partnership opportunities. One of the WIRFC’s many goals is to encourage and prioritize spending for projects that integrate water efficiency, energy efficiency, water reuse, and green infrastructure. Gina McCarthy – Administrator of the EPA – endorsed the program, explaining that “by modernizing the nation’s infrastructure we can protect our drinking water sources and enhance resilience to the impacts of climate change.”
White House officials applauded the EPA’s development of the Water Finance Center, announcing it as a tool that will “help interested local and state governments bring private sector investment and expertise into water system construction and management.” The White House is also hoping that increased investment brought on by the WIRFC will create jobs and promote further economic growth. It’s no coincidence that announcement of the program was timed with a “ribbon-cutting” event of the Anacostia River Tunnel Project – a massive construction undertaking in Washington, DC.
 Environmental Protection Agency, “EPA Launches Finance Center to Improve Community Water Infrastructure and Resiliency.” http://www.natlawreview.com/article/epa-launches-finance-center-to-improve-community-water-infrastructure-and-resiliency
 Wolfgang, “Obama launches new clean-water, infrastructure programs.” http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/jan/16/obama-launches-new-clean-water-infrastructure-prog/