PHILADELPHIA, PA, June 2, 2009 -- In a move that stands to create jobs, boost local economies, improve aging water infrastructure and protect human health and the environment for the people in the State of Maryland, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has awarded over $121.6 million to the Maryland Department of the Environment. This new infusion of money provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 will help the state and local governments finance many of the overdue improvements to water projects that are essential to protecting public health and the environment across the state.
"Maryland now has the 'green light' to fund projects that will protect public health, upgrade infrastructure, and invigorate local economies across the state," said William C. Early, acting administrator of EPA's mid-Atlantic region. "This financing is significant when you consider that the state is poised to fund a project in every Maryland county."
The Clean Water State Revolving Fund program will receive $94.78 million. It provides low-interest loans for water quality protection projects for wastewater treatment, non-point source pollution control, and watershed and estuary management. The Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program will receive $26.83 million. It provides low-interest loans for drinking water systems to finance infrastructure improvements. The program also emphasizes providing funds to small and disadvantaged communities and to programs that encourage pollution prevention as a tool for ensuring safe drinking water.
Many of the clean water projects will aid in the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay and watershed, helping to reduce excess nutrients from wastewater treatment plants and other sources by upgrading waste water treatment plants, sewer and water main upgrades and other much needed infrastructure projects which are in the Bay watershed.
An unprecedented $6 billion dollars will be awarded to fund water and wastewater infrastructure projects across the country under the Recovery Act in the form of low-interest loans, principal forgiveness and grants. At least 20% of the funds provided under the Recovery Act are to be used for green infrastructure, water and energy efficiency improvements and other environmentally innovative projects.
President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on February 17, 2009, and has directed that the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability.
>> See how every dollar is being invested
>> Information on EPA's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
>> Information on the Clean Water State Revolving Fund program
>> Information on the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program