The bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (“Infrastructure Act”) signed by President Biden on November 15, 2021 provides for $10 billion in funding to address PFAS contamination, nationwide. In a letter to governors dated December 2, 2021, EPA identified its aspirations for this Infrastructure Act funding, which include addressing PFAS and other emerging contaminants in water, in addition to targeting resources to disadvantaged communities and addressing lead in drinking water. The Infrastructure Act does not identify specific projects to be implemented, but rather identifies categories of projects to receive the funding through partnerships with states, including: $5 billion to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water in disadvantaged communities; $4 billion to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water; and $1 billion to address emerging contaminants in water generally.
The new water infrastructure funding will generally flow through State Revolving Funds (“SRFs”). EPA’s Office of Water intends to issue guidance and technical assistance for states and encourages states to maximize the use of SRF funds to address needs in underserved communities. Under the estimated 2022 allotments, Pennsylvania will receive $240 million, NJ $169 million and Delaware $63 million. Pennsylvania has reported that its $240 million in funding will be administered by PENNVEST and will target communities with the most significant needs and least capacity to finance needed repairs and upgrades.