Massachusetts Clean Water Trust Wins 2022 Bond Award by Environmental Finance for ‘Sustainability Bond of the Year – US Muni’
BOSTON — The Massachusetts Clean Water Trust (the Trust) was awarded the 2022 ‘Sustainability Bond of the Year – US Muni’ by Environmental Finance for the sale of its Series 23 Green and Sustainability Bonds (AAA/Aaa/AAA) in April 2021. Last year, the Trust sold approximately $351.4 million in new money Green and Sustainability Bonds to finance vital wastewater and drinking water projects for borrowers, prioritizing disadvantaged communities.
The $209.5 million in Sustainability Bonds financed projects adhering to the Clean Water and Safe Drinking Water Acts and were designated for borrowers from Tier III (those most in need) Disadvantaged Communities. Tier III communities are those with an adjusted per capita income (APCI), which factors in per capita income, unemployment rate and population change of a borrower, that is 60% or lower than the state average.
Paving the way for other states, the Trust is the first State Revolving Fund (SRF) program in the country to issue Sustainability Bonds. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) were used to align water infrastructure projects into green, social, and sustainability categories to create a robust and transparent environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure statement.
“Sustainability Bonds demonstrate the Trust’s strong commitment to ensuring low-cost financing is allocated to cities and towns that need it the most,” said State Treasurer Deborah B. Goldberg, Chair of the Trust. “We will continue to stress the importance of utilizing these opportunities in support of our local communities and environment.”
“This award affirms the Clean Water Trust's innovative approach to financing water infrastructure projects for high-need communities" said Secretary of Administration and Finance Michael J. Heffernan, who is also a member of the Clean Water Trust's Board of Trustees. "The Baker-Polito Administration is proud of the nation-leading efforts of the Clean Water Trust and the critical improvements it has enabled across Massachusetts."
“This recognition underscores the important work of the Trust to serve communities across the Commonwealth,” said Commissioner Martin Suuberg of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. “The Sustainability Bonds leverage water infrastructure funds that greatly benefit the most at-need communities now and for years to come.”
"Being the first sustainable bond issued by a State Revolving Fund (SRF) program in the country, we wanted to demonstrate to investors the vital work SRFs finance in underserved disadvantaged communities," said Sue Perez, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Clean Water Trust. "We enhanced our environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure and simplified our discussion of the purpose and benefits of the SRF program. It is such an important program for so many communities, especially disadvantaged communities, and their essential water infrastructure."
About the Clean Water Trust
Since its establishment in 1989, the Trust has loaned nearly $8.1 billion to improve and maintain the quality of water in the Commonwealth. An estimated 97 percent of Massachusetts' residents have benefited from the financial assistance of the Trust.