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The Newest Player in the Climate Change/Renewable Energy Game: EPA’s $100+ Billion Clean Water State Revolving Fund

April 2014

Citation: ELR 10277

Author: Michael Curley and Lindsay Haislip

On August 13, 2013, the state of New York set an important legal precedent that could help to retard climate change and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the United States. On that day, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (the Authority) issued $23.4 million in bonds to fund residential energy-efficiency projects. The bonds were rated AAA/Aaa, thanks to a financial guaranty from the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC). What was astonishing was that the EFC, which manages the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) in New York, used legal authority under the Clean Water Act (CWA)—not the Clean Air Act—to effectuate the guaranty.

Michael Curley is a Visiting Scholar at the Environmental Law Institute. Lindsay Haislip is an Associate at Cambridge Associates.

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