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EPA Announces $55M WIFIA Loan to Modernize Wastewater Infrastructure in Providence, Rhode Island, and Protect Narragansett Bay

PROVIDENCE, RI — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announces a $55-million Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan to the Narragansett Bay Commission in Providence, Rhode Island. EPA’s third WIFIA loan to the commission will help finance upgrades to increase climate resiliency and cybersecurity at one of the nation’s oldest wastewater facilities.

“Water is essential, and resilient wastewater infrastructure ensures that we can count on the pumps and pipes that safely return used water to the environment,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox. “The Field’s Point Wastewater Facilities are among the oldest in the country, and I am so pleased that the Narragansett Bay Commission is using its WIFIA loan to protect the system from vulnerabilities due to extreme weather events as well as cybersecurity threats.”

The Field’s Point Wastewater Treatment Facilities has been in continuous operation for nearly 100 years. EPA’s WIFIA loan will help the Narragansett Bay Commission ensure the reliable operation of these facilities by making them more resilient to increasing extreme weather events in the northeast and potential cybersecurity attacks. The project replaces the odor control system, implements improvements to disinfection and de-chlorination systems, and constructs a new septage receiving station. It improves the system’s resiliency by improving cybersecurity to protect critical information technology infrastructure and installing standby power capabilities to maintain uninterrupted operation of treatment processes. Additionally, the project will support the installation of a solar carport at Field’s Point that will help power the wastewater treatment plant.

“The Narragansett Bay Commission is so gratified to again participate in the WIFIA program,” said Narragansett Bay Commission Chairman Vincent Mesolella. “We are tremendously excited to continue our work to build a resilient clean water future for our ratepayers and all Rhode Islanders.”

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