Washington, DC -- American Rivers today applauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which will create jobs, put our nation on the path to economic growth, and transform the way we manage clean water and rivers.
American Rivers praised House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) for their leadership on the bill. American Rivers also thanked Chairmen David Obey (D-WI), James Oberstar (D-MN), and Norman Dicks (D-WA) for their work on the clean water provisions in the bill.
H.R. 1 includes $2 billion for drinking water under the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund and $6 billion for clean water under the Clean Water State Revolving Fund programs, with $600 million set aside for green infrastructure and water efficiency projects. It also includes $400 million in grants for river restoration projects through the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration.
As a whole, the bill includes investments that will create high quality green jobs here at home: generating more renewable energy; reducing our oil dependence through increased efficiency and public transit; restoring our parks, wildlife refuges, and forests; and funding local green infrastructure water projects.
Betsy Otto, vice president of strategic partnerships for American Rivers, made the following statement:
“This bill will create jobs, boost the economy, and transform the way our country manages rivers and water. This kind of investment represents a sea change, and will ensure that the nation is better prepared to meet the water challenges of the 21st Century. The bill is a down payment on a better future.”
“Communities are ready to begin construction on billions of dollars of green infrastructure projects but they lack the financial resources. Thanks to the House, funding green infrastructure projects will provide an immediate stimulus to the economy while ensuring that plentiful clean water will be available in the future to drive economic growth.”
“This bill is a win-win-win: it creates jobs, improves the nation’s rivers and clean water supplies, and saves communities’ money. Green solutions work better, cost less, and provide more flexibility for managing our water resources in the face of climate change impacts.”
American Rivers is the leading organization working to protect and restore the nation’s rivers and streams. Rivers connect us to each other, nature, and future generations. Since 1973, American Rivers has fought to preserve these connections, helping protect and restore more than 150,000 miles of rivers through advocacy efforts, on-the-ground projects, and the annual release of America’s Most Endangered Rivers®.
Headquartered in Washington, DC, American Rivers has offices across the country and more than 100,000 supporters, members, and volunteers nationwide. Visit www.americanrivers.org, www.facebook.com/americanrivers and www.twitter.com/americanrivers.