Blog

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Water as a Service

At a recent conference, we asked utility managers and operators to tell us about their everyday communication challenges. Again and again, we heard that communicating with customers about the value of the service their utility provides was difficult, because too often, customers think about water as a good rather than ...
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Metrics to Determine Principal Forgiveness Eligibility: Highlighting EPA Region 4

The State Revolving Fund (SRF) programs have become a well-known financing option for many water and wastewater infrastructure projects across the country. This is mainly due to the longevity of the clean water (CWSRF) and drinking water (DWSRF) programs and the appealing financing options, such as low-interest rates, offered in each state. However, many ...
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Can Households Afford Water and Wastewater Bills When Faced with Unexpected Expenses?

At the Environmental Finance Center, we think a lot about the affordability of environmental services such as drinking water and wastewater.  Historically, many systems have measured affordability by looking at the cost of service compared to a community’s median household income (MHI), though this measure is limited.  A better way to measure affordability is to ...
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Are Your Rates Special?

Written by: Annalee Harkins Annalee Harkins is a Data Specialist and Project Manager at the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  In the course of conducting our statewide utility rates surveys, we here at the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina ...
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Blog Post Round-Up: Infrastructure Week 2018

Written by: Elizabeth Harvell Elizabeth Harvell is the Outreach Coordinator at the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Today marks the end of the sixth annual National Infrastructure Week—a week of events, media coverage, and issue advocacy across the country to elevate infrastructure as a ...
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Water Utilities and Land Trusts: A Match Made in Heaven?

Written by: Ed Suslovic Ed Suslovic is a Program Associate at the New England Environmental Finance Center. There aren’t many organizations wondering what to do with all of their excess resources. “Gee, we just don’t know how to spend all of this extra money or where to assign all of ...
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Critical Assets – What Are They and Where Are They?

Image Courtesy of Sira Anamwong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net Written by Michele Pugh Michele Pugh is the Director of the Wichita State University Environmental Finance Center They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but, did you know a picture could save you 1,000 hours, or even $1,000? Knowing what your ...
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Top Five Small Town Websites and Tips to Improve Your Own

Written by: Erin Danford Erin Danford is an undergraduate student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill For many small towns, websites are the main avenue of communication with residents. At the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, we use town websites ...
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Board Member Responsibilities for Managing a Water Utility

Written by: Leslie Kimble Leslie Kimble is a Program Coordinator at the Wichita State University Environmental Finance Center Elected officials or board members may be members of a city council or county commission, or serve on the Rural Water District board. With a long list of to-dos and policy concerns, ...
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Safe & SuRe: Exploring a New Approach to Resilient Systems

Written by: Brandy Espinola Brandy Espinola is the Resilience and Sustainability Program Manager for the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland. From emergency services, to agriculture and food systems, to manufacturing industries, our critical infrastructure systems rely heavily on water. So much so that following a loss of ...
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