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What Drives Public-Private Partnerships and the Risks to Be Aware of

July 2, 2015

As the nation struggles to repair, maintain, and expand its infrastructure, public-private partnerships are gaining traction as a strategy for delivering traditionally “public” services. Public-private partnerships (or P3s) are touted on the idea that public projects can benefit from the … Continued

Revolving Credit – All Grown Up

February 20, 2013

Jen Weiss is a Finance Analyst at the Environmental Finance Center.  Quick … what do you think of when you hear the word “revolving?”  A revolving door?  A revolving restaurant?  Perhaps a revolving credit card? In the environmental finance world, … Continued

State Green Banks: Funding a Greener Tomorrow, Today

January 30, 2013

Chris Kenrick is a Research Assistant at the Environmental Finance Center and is pursuing dual master’s degrees in information science and public administration. If any of you are like me, then you probably spent a good portion of last Monday waiting … Continued

The Role of Rates in Ratings

November 8, 2012

Mary Tiger is the Chief Operating Officer of the Environmental Finance Center. Christine Boyle was a Post-Doctorate Fellow of the Environmental Finance Center. Thanks also to the direction and analysis provided by Jeff Hughes and Dayne Batten. Rising costs, declining … Continued

Service Line Protection: Homeowners and Utilities Can Benefit

September 11, 2012

Guest author Catherine Noyes is an Associate Consultant at Raftelis Financial Consultants.

Since October, 2010, the Houston-Galveston area has suffered from one of the worst droughts on record. According to the Area Council’s Clean Rivers Program, by the end of 2011, the City of Houston had repaired 17,756 water line breaks, up from 10,821 in 2010. Given that July, 2012 was the hottest month in 117 years of records, it’s not surprising that water service utilities around the country are struggling to keep up with the drought damage impacting buried infrastructure. This damage includes anything from soil shifting as it dries out, to tree roots working their way into pipes in search of moisture.

Depending on where these breaks occur, homeowners may be responsible for shouldering the financial burden of repair or replacement – often at a cost of thousands of dollars. Many homeowners may not know that they are responsible for both the water line that runs from their home to the city’s water meter, and for the sewer line that runs from their home to the city’s sewer main. Through line protection programs, homeowners have a chance to mitigate the significant financial cost that can accompany standard emergency line replacement or repair, which homeowner’s insurance may not cover.

Who pays, and who benefits?

September 4, 2012

Glenn Barnes is a senior project director at the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina. Glenn is the project manager of the Sustainable Finance for Wetland Programs project funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. When working … Continued