By: Erin Ansbro
New growth has sprung up at EFC! To make our many resources more accessible, we have added “Resources by State” pages for all fifty states. The new layout changes include a clickable map, state-specific information, and all available years of resources in one place.
From the home page, hover over the “Resources” Tab at the top and select “Resources by State” from the dropdown menu that appears. This will bring you to the interactive map where you can then pick the resources you want to view by state. Continue reading
In 2017, the EFC wrote about an exciting new financial instrument: the Environmental Impact Bond (EIB). At the time of the original blog post, EIBs were mostly theoretical, the only one in existence being issued by DC Water, but still very early in the process. Modeled after the Social Impact Bond, an EIB was novel and intriguing. Today, EIBs remain exciting, but more of them are beginning to surface. EIBs are tied to a group, Quantified Ventures, that structures the bond and has been pushing the ball forward.
The first EIB, issued by DC Water, aimed to address combined sewer overflows (CSOs) and a consent decree by utilizing green infrastructure, instead of the traditional gray infrastructure. The EIB allowed DC Water to share the risk of an unconventional project with impact investors, in this case Goldman Sachs and the Calvert Foundation. This works through a “pay for success” model, which creates a performance payout system that aligns the interest of the utility/municipality with that of the investors. The EIB creates a situation where otherwise risk-averse local governments can think outside the (gray infrastructure) box. Continue reading
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, utilities across the nation continue to adapt to rapidly changing conditions through a number of measures, from suspending water shut-offs to implementing cost-saving maneuvers like reducing energy costs.
To better understand some of the financial implications of the pandemic, the Environmental Finance Center surveyed 93 water and wastewater utilities in North Carolina in early May on a range of topics, including payment plans for delinquent customers, how long they can pay all operating and capital expenses, changes in total revenue collected, staffing for utility operations, plans for the next fiscal year’s rates, and the scope, funding, or timing of capital infrastructure projects for the year.
Four key insights from the survey are detailed below. Each finding is coupled with graphs showing the response distribution for the survey question connected to the key finding. Continue reading