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News
Release

For Immediate Release:
September 30, 2002

Contact: Adam Krantz
202/833-4651


EPA Report on Water Infrastructure Funding Gap Bolsters WIN Position

Today’s release of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) report, The Clean Water and Drinking Water Infrastructure Gap Analysis, documents an enormous water and wastewater infrastructure funding shortfall of as much as $534 billion. This startling funding gap threatens the nation’s critical water and wastewater infrastructure, and bolsters what the Water Infrastructure Network (WIN) has consistently voiced since its inception in 1999 — the federal government must be a central component of a long-term sustainable solution to the nation’s water and wastewater infrastructure funding need. The report is available at http://www.epa.gov/owm/gapreport.pdf.

EPA’s report states that “with the aging of the nation’s infrastructure, the clean water and drinking water industries face a significant challenge to sustain and advance their achievements in protecting public health and the environment.” Ken Kirk, Chair of the Water Infrastructure Network and Executive Director of the Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies states, “the EPA Report points to a water and wastewater infrastructure funding gap of over half a trillion dollars. Simply put, we face a looming crisis as pipes and systems age and remain in desperate need of upgrade and repair. Municipalities now shoulder 90% of these infrastructure costs, but, as EPA’s Gap Analysis demonstrates, they cannot continue to foot this massive infrastructure bill alone. Without a serious, long-term commitment from the federal government, the massive need over the next twenty years will only become greater and the nation will have passed over the opportunity to stem a looming environmental and public health crisis.” In remarks made today at WEFTEC 2002 in Chicago, Ill., EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman announced the release of the report and discussed the need to continue the dialogue between water and wastewater organizations and EPA officials.

Significantly, EPA’s Gap Analysis supports the recommendations in WIN’s report, Clean and Safe Water in the 21st Century. The WIN Report calls on Congress and the President to sign and budget for new legislation to finance clean and safe water for America that creates a long-term, sustainable, and reliable source of funding for clean and safe water; focuses on critical “core” water and wastewater infrastructure needs; and streamlines federal administration of the funding program.

Already, the Government Accounting Office, and the Congressional Budget Office have weighed in with numbers similar to EPA’s and the WIN Report. The EPA report should further serve as an impetus for Congress’ bipartisan support of meaningful legislation that will provide an innovative, long-term and sustainable solution to the nation’s critical water and wastewater infrastructure needs. WIN looks forward to continuing to work with Congress and EPA to develop a solution to the nation’s water and wastewater infrastructure shortfall that will secure the public’s health and environmental well-being.


WIN is a broad-based coalition of local elected officials, drinking water and wastewater service providers, state environmental and health program administrators, labor, engineers and environmentalists dedicated to preserving and protecting the health, environmental and economic gains that America's drinking water and wastewater infrastructure provides.

WATER INFRASTRUCTURE NETWORK
1816 Jefferson Place, Washington, DC 20036-2505
www.win-water.org - 202/833-2672 - 202/833-4657 FAX

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