DENVER (KDVR) – The first impactful distribution of water-focused federal funding was awarded to Colorado on Friday in an effort to repair the state’s crumbling water infrastructure.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law diverts $50 billion in federal money toward the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency so that they in turn can divvy out that funding to communities across the country in order to help them gain access to safe and clean water sources.
Of that $50 billion outlined in the law, Colorado has been awarded $121 million.
“All communities need access to clean, reliable, safe water,” EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan said. “Thanks to President Biden’s leadership and the resources from the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are repairing aging water infrastructure, replacing lead service lines, cleaning up contaminants, and making our communities more resilient in the face of floods and climate impacts.”
The $121 million awarded by the EPA will be used to:
- Helps communities access clean, safe and reliable drinking water
- Collect and treat wastewater to protect public health
- Clean up pollution
- Safeguard vital waterways
“Every American should have access to clean, potable water,” said Congressman Jason Crow. “This critical investment will both modernize our water infrastructure and protect vital waterways in Colorado. I’m proud to have helped deliver this funding with my vote for the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.”
This funding is part of Pres. Joe Biden’s Justice40 program, which according to the EPA aims to redirect 40% of all benefits from specific federally-run programs to underserved communities.
“CDPHE is leveraging our strong community partnerships to ensure that this funding will protect Colorado’s precious waterways and provide access to clean water for decades to come,” Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Water Quality Control Division Nicole Rowan said.
A full breakdown of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law can be viewed on the EPA’s website.
Once these grants are received, the state can begin redirecting them to water restoration projects.