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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced the availability of up to $1 billion under the new Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program, aimed at providing credit-worthy water supply and wastewater projects long-term, low-cost assistance through direct loans and loan guarantees.

From U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Branch Chief Teri Morisi … By 2024, nearly one in four people in the labor force will likely be over the age of 55, a sharp change from 1994, when just under 12 percent of workers were at or above that age threshold. Workers 55 and older will represent the largest share of the 2024 workforce as measured by the other age groups of 16-24, 25-34, 35-44 and 45-54.

After directing late-2016 blast tests on three cross laminated timber (CLT) specimens at Tyndall Air Force Base in Panama City, Fla., representatives of the Wood Products Council’s WoodWorks program observed that the structures “remained intact and matched modeling predictions with acceptable levels of damage under significant explosive loading.” The tests were conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service and Softwood Lumber Board; results stand to expand the use of wood solutions for Department of Defense applications and other blast-resistant construction.

An Occupational Safety and Health Administration white paper, “Sustainability in the Workplace: A New Approach for Protecting Worker Safety and Health,” highlights the importance of human capital in the growing movement toward sustainability and corporate responsibility. Sustainability strives to balance social, environmental and economic considerations to achieve long-term success and viability, the agency notes, as responsible businesses embrace the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.

A new, U.S. Green Building Council-backed report documents large-scale environmental, health and economic benefits that Washington, D.C. could realize from such “smart surface” technologies as pervious concrete or permeable concrete paver installations, cool or green roofs, and solar photovoltaic panels. “Achieving Urban Resilience DC” estimates the District, as a standalone municipality, could save $5 billion over 40 years; enhance health and livability; and, temper peak summer heat.