EPA selects 29 finance centers to receive grants, provide technical assistance

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) this month announced the selection of 29 Environmental Finance Centers (EFCs) that will help communities across the country access federal funding for infrastructure and greenhouse gas reduction projects that improve public health and environmental protection.

EPA Headquarters

The EFCs will deliver targeted technical assistance to local governments, states, Tribes, and non-governmental organizations to protect public health, safeguard the environment, and advance environmental justice. Thanks to President Joe Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the selected EFCs will help underserved communities that have historically struggled to access federal funding receive the support they need to access resources for water infrastructure improvements.

“The Biden Administration is committed to ensuring that all people have access to clean air to breathe, safe water to drink, and clean land to live on,” said EPA Deputy Administrator Janet McCabe. “To achieve this goal and protect public health, we must uplift and support underserved and overburdened communities across rural, suburban, and urban areas. The new Environmental Finance Centers EPA is announcing today will help connect communities in need with federal funding opportunities, including historic water infrastructure investments through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and investments in greenhouse gas and air pollution projects through the Inflation Reduction Act.” 

EPA will award up to $150 million in grants to EFCs over the next five years, once all legal and administrative requirements are satisfied. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides $98 million of the total investment through EPA’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF), with the remainder of funds coming from EPA appropriations.

The newly selected EFCs will work to strengthen communities through projects focused on drinking water, wastewater, stormwater, solid waste, clean air, greenhouse gas reduction, and toxic substances—and a focus of their work will be supporting overburdened and underserved communities. EPA will be engaging with the selected grantees to ensure communities in need receive this critical technical assistance

About the Environmental Finance Centers Grant Program

Many communities with significant pollution challenges and infrastructure needs have not been able to access federal funding and financing programs to address these concerns. EPA recognizes that existing environmental gains cannot be preserved, nor further progress achieved, unless states, Tribes, and local governments, and non-governmental organizations have the resources to develop and sustain environmental projects.

Through the EFC grant program, technical assistance providers will help communities develop and submit project proposals, including State Revolving Fund (SRF) applications for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) funding and greenhouse gas reduction projects through the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. EFCs will support underserved communities with technical assistance to identify sustainable infrastructure solutions. These entities will provide states, Tribes, and local governments or water systems with technical assistance services to advance equitable health and environmental protections.

The 2022 selected recipients for the Environmental Finance Center Grant Program are:

Category 1 – Regional Multi-Environmental Media EFCs:

  • Low Impact Development Center Inc.
  • Michigan Technological University
  • National Rural Water Association
  • Rural Community Assistance Corporation, West Sacramento
  • Syracuse University
  • University Enterprises, Inc. dba Sac State Sponsored
  • University of Maine System
  • University of Maryland
  • University of New Mexico
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Urban Sustainability Directors Network
  • Wichita State University

Category 2 – Regional Water Infrastructure EFCs:

  • Delta Institute
  • Hawaii Community Foundation
  • National Rural Water Association
  • Rural Community Assistance Corporation, West Sacramento covering EPA Region 9
  • Rural Community Assistance Corporation, West Sacramento covering EPA Region 10
  • Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project, Inc.
  • Syracuse University
  • University of Maine System
  • University of Maryland
  • University of New Mexico
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Wichita State University
  • WSOS Community Action Commission, Inc.

Category 3 – National Water Infrastructure EFCs:

  • Moonshot Missions
  • Rural Community Assistance Partnership, Washington, DC
  • Sand County Foundation
  • U.S. Water Alliance

EPA announced the Request for Applications in April, and the period for submitting applications ended on July 1, 2022.

Learn more about the Environmental Finance Centers.

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