Click the link to read the article on the Reclamation website (Peter Soeth):
Investments will fund water efficiency and drought resilience projects in California, Colorado, Idaho, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wyoming
The Department of the Interior today announced $25.5 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds for WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grants to safeguard local water supplies in the face of severe western drought.
Fourteen projects in eight western states will be awarded funding to help local communities improve water use efficiency by lining canals, upgrading water meters, installing automated gates to control water flow and making other infrastructure improvements. The projects are anticipated to save more than 12 billion gallons of water annually – enough to fill over roughly 880,000 swimming pools–through reductions in residential water use and improvements to increase irrigation efficiency. Two of the projects will also receive funding for solar energy installations to power the affiliated water facility and water district buildings. Including non-federal funding contributions, the projects represent more than $130 million in water management improvements.
“Through President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are making a historic investment in drought resilience and water infrastructure to help more families, farmers and Tribes gain access to clean water,” said Assistant Secretary for Water and Science Tanya Trujillo. “The WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grants will help communities conserve and use water more efficiency, increase the production of hydropower and help us tackle historic drought.”
“Delivering water more efficiently is key to helping Western communities become more resilient to drought. These community-led projects are an example of how the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law supports our work to minimize drought impacts and develop long-term solutions to facilitate water conservation and economic growth.” said Commissioner Camille Calimlim Touton. “These grants represent a once in a generation opportunity to meet the long-term adaptation for drought and a changing climate.”
President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law allocates $8.3 billion for Bureau of Reclamation water infrastructure projects to repair aging water delivery systems, secure dams, complete rural water projects, protect aquatic ecosystems and fulfill Indian Water Rights Settlements. The funding announced today is part of the $160 million in WaterSMART grants provided by the Law in 2022. Local governments in eight states set to receive funding must complete their project within three years.
The projects selected are: