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EPA Awards Puerto Rico Nearly $72 Million For Water Infrastructure Projects

July 14, 2009
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The agency says stimulus money will boost economy, create jobs, and protect human health and the environment .

At a press conference in San Juan, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson announced the agency has awarded nearly $72 million to Puerto Rico through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The infusion of money will help the commonwealth and local governments finance overdue improvements to wastewater and drinking water systems, and conduct water quality planning essential to protecting human health and the environment.

Breakdown of Funding:

  • EPA awarded $51.6 million to the Puerto Rico Department of Environmental Quality, which will provide money to municipal governments and wastewater utilities for projects to protect lakes, ponds and streams in communities across the commonwealth. The grant will go to the commonwealth’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund program, which provides low-interest loans for water quality protection projects for wastewater treatment, non-point source pollution control, and watershed and estuary management. Across the country, an unprecedented $4 billion will be awarded to fund wastewater infrastructure projects under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

  • EPA awarded $19.5 million to the Puerto Rico Department of Health to finance improvements to water projects essential to protecting public health and the environment across the commonwealth. The funds will go to the commonwealth’s Drinking Water State Revolving Fund program, which provides low-interest loans for drinking water systems to finance infrastructure improvements. An unprecedented $2 billion will be awarded to fund drinking water infrastructure projects across the country under the recovery act in the form of low-interest loans, principal forgiveness and grants.

  • EPA awarded $526,300 for the Commonwealth’s Water Quality Management Planning (WQMP) grant program. Planning is an important step in EPA’s goal to improve water quality in America’s lakes, rivers and streams. WQMP grants support a broad range of activities, such as setting standards, monitoring the quality of the water, developing plans to restore polluted waters, and identifying ways to protect healthy waters from becoming polluted. States and commonwealths are also encouraged to use these funds for more innovative planning activities like developing plans to adapt to climate change, analyzing trends in water availability and use, and creating low-impact development programs. Grants are awarded to state agencies and some of the funds can be awarded to regional and interstate planning organizations.

    At least 20 percent 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.

    See how every stimulus dollar is being invested at recovery.gov. 
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