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Lancaster Revolving Water Fund partners with East Lampeter Township to improve water quality and soil carbon sequestration

By: PRLog

Innovative market-based program rewards farmers and advances water quality and carbon sequestration in Pennsylvania.

LANCASTER, Pa. - Oct. 20, 2022 - PRLog -- The Lancaster Revolving Water Fund and East Lampeter Township partner to achieve critical water quality objectives in Lancaster County, a priority conservation area in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.  Under the partnership, East Lampeter Township has executed a forward-looking and cost-effective contract that improves local water quality while addressing Federal and state mandates under the Clean Water Act. The Lancaster Revolving Water Fund, a partnership between the Lancaster Clean Water Partners and the Conservation Innovation Fund, expands the Revolving Water Fund's outcomes-based model into a critical agricultural landscape in Pennsylvania, where many local waterways remain impaired due to agricultural and urban runoff during storm events.

Pioneered by i2 Capital, Stroud Water Research Center and the Nature Conservancy, the Revolving Water Fund is an innovative conservation finance program that funds and implements natural infrastructure solutions to reduce sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorus from flowing into local waterways. The model leverages a "blended capital" pool operating under the auspices of the Conservation Innovation Fund and provides full-service delivery of quantified units of pollution under pay-for-performance contracts in support of municipal stormwater management objectives.

"The team at East Lampeter worked with the Lancaster Revolving Water Fund to bring this model to life in a way that is beneficial to municipalities in Pennsylvania that face mounting pressure and costs to build out their Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) plans," said Tara Hitchens, Assistant Township Manager. "We are very proud to be the first municipality in Lancaster County to pioneer this program, which is cost-effective for taxpayers of the township and supports our local agricultural community."

John Cox, Senior Advisor to the Lancaster Clean Water Partners, added, "This public/private partnership is a prime example of how we are expanding sustainable funding and market-based solutions for Lancaster County to clean its streams, in line with Lancaster Clean Water Partner's 'Clean and Clear Water by 2040 agenda.' We're thrilled to partner with leaders in East Lampeter and our local agricultural community to expand this solution across the county."

The Lancaster Revolving Water Fund provides the financial and technical capacity to develop and install agricultural best management practices that reduce pollutants that enter municipal waterways. Lancaster farmers have a proud heritage of farm stewardship. The program bolsters ongoing efforts to extend on-farm solutions that enhance the sustainability of Lancaster farms. Excess sediment and nutrient loads are reduced through the application of cover crops, no-till farming, the installation of farmland buffers, and nutrient management strategies such as manure injection, among other practices.  Soil carbon levels are also enhanced under the program.

"The program leverages a blended capital pool to scale well-established agricultural sustainability practices that improve the quality of water across agricultural watersheds," said Ashley Allen Jones, Founder of i2 Capital and a principal architect of the Revolving Water Fund model. "We have worked in earnest to align finance, agriculture, policy, quantification, and public and corporate conservation interests into a 'conservation supply chain' that increases the pace and scale of urgent water quality and soil carbon sequestration solutions in the Mid-Atlantic."

East Lampeter's pay-for-performance contract with the Lancaster Revolving Water Fund will be part of the township's 2022 general budget expense, supported by its stormwater fee.  The contract fulfills a substantial portion of the Township's remaining sediment reduction requirements under its current Municipal Separate Storm and Sewer (MS4) permit issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.


About East Lampeter Township. East Lampeter Township is located in beautiful and historic Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, one of the most productive non-irrigated farming regions in the United States.  East Lampeter is noted for its diversity of land uses, which include agriculture, industry, business, park, retail commercial, tourist attractions, and services and education. East Lampeter covers approximately 21 square miles and is home to hundreds of family-owned farms. The Township offers outstanding public service with an emerging focus on environmental sustainability and climate-smart agriculture, which contribute to a high-quality community in which to live, work, play and visit.  For more information, see:

About Lancaster Clean Water Partners. The Lancaster Clean Water Partners is a countywide, collaborative partnership of diverse partner organizations – local leaders in business, municipal public service, higher education, conservation planning, and non-profit management – that come together with a shared vision of clean and clear water in Lancaster by 2040. .  The Partners thrives because of the collaboration among the partner organizations. They are at the center of the organization's mission: Rapidly accelerate and expand the ability of the partner organizations to restore and sustain healthy Lancaster County waterways.  For more information, see:

About the Conservation Innovation Fund (CIF). The CIF is a non-profit conservation finance fund that supports the systemic alignment of capital, conservation, and commodities across an integrated supply chain.  The CIF's blended capital structure combines grant capital with commercial capital and program-related investments to address critical gaps in the funding continuum for emerging market-based climate solutions. The CIF aims to increase the pace and scale of watershed conservation through innovative finance. For more information, see

Callan Walsh Dever

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Lancaster Revolving Water Fund East Lampeter Township Lancaster Clean Water Partners

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