U.S. Senate Passes Inflation Reduction Act, Includes $4 billion in Drought Relief by ACWA Staff Aug 9, 2022 Water News The U. S. Senate on Sunday passed the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (H.R. 5376), which restructures the House Build Back Better Act to provide $740 billion for clean energy, climate, environmental justice, prescription drug pricing, and deficit reduction initiatives. ACWA worked closely with a diverse coalition of agriculture and urban stakeholders to ensure drought measures were included in the Inflation Reduction Act, as well as protect the forest health funding. Two letters submitted to Senate negotiators can be found at www.acwa.com/resources. Notably, the bill includes several climate resilience provisions related to drought and wildfire, including: $4 billion to mitigate the impacts of drought in reclamation states, with priority given to the Colorado River Basin and other basins experiencing comparable levels of long-term drought. The funding can be used for compensation for voluntary reduction in the diversion of water or consumptive use, voluntary system conservation projects, ecosystem and habitat restoration projects. $550 million for disadvantaged communities to develop water projects to provide domestic water supplies. $25 million to cover water conveyance facilities with solar panels to generate renewable energy. $5 billion to protect communities from wildfires while combating the climate crisis and supporting the workforce through climate-smart forestry. The Senate passed the legislation by a 51-50 vote. The House is expected to vote on final passage at the end of this week. If approved by both houses, it will go to President Biden’s desk for signature.