Wyden, Merkley: Nearly $19 Million to Oregon to Ensure Clean Drinking Water in Rural and Underserved Communities

Washington, D.C. –
U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley this week announced Oregon will
receive $18.9 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to address
emerging contaminants like Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in
drinking water.

“Access to clean
drinking water is a human right that is undermined by the presence of PFAS and
other contaminants that often go unaddressed in too many water systems around
the state due to outdated infrastructure,” said Wyden, who
supported the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. “These dollars will go a long way to identify the communities
affected by PFAS contamination, neutralize the pollutants, and then safeguard
our state’s future drinking water sources.”

“PFAS contamination
represents an urgent public health threat across our nation, with millions of
Americans consuming PFAS-contaminated water that could put them and their
children at higher risk for cancer, birth defects, and other devastating health
outcomes,” said Senator Merkley, who, as Chair of the Appropriations
Subcommittee on Interior and the Environment, wrote the legislation funding the
EPA. “This funding to promote
clean and safe drinking water for all Oregonians is vital as we work to combat
PFAS contamination across the country.” 

Oregon received this funding through the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency’s (EPA) Emerging
Contaminants in Small or Disadvantaged Communities (EC-SDC) Grant Program 
assesses and improves access to safe and clean water in small, rural, and
disadvantaged communities while supporting local economies. 

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests $5 billion over
five years to help communities that are on the frontlines of PFAS contamination
reduce PFAS in drinking water. EPA announced the funds for Oregon as part of a
$2 billion nationwide investment so that states and territories can source
water treatment for pollutants, like PFAS and other emerging contaminants, and
to conduct water quality testing. 

deserve clean, safe drinking water,” said EPA Region 10
Administrator Casey Sixkiller.”Thanks
to this historic investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, EPA is
delivering on its commitment to address PFAS and emerging contaminants by
providing more than $18 million to safeguard Oregon’s drinking water and
protect communities from these dangerous chemicals.”