San Antonio, Texas – During its semi-annual meeting, the Board of Directors of the North American Development Bank (NADB) and the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) announced that, on November 10th, the amendments to the institutions’ Charter will enter into effect, integrating the BECC and the NADB into a single institution for the development and financing of sustainable environmental infrastructure in the U.S.-Mexico border region.
“This merger defines a new era for the institution that maintains its mission of helping to preserve and protect human health and environmental conditions for the communities in the border region. In addition, this merger ensures that the Bank’s functions and operations continue to be strengthened to serve border needs more effectively,” stated Carlos Márquez-Padilla Casar, Head of International Finance at Mexico’s Ministry of Finance (SHCP) and Board chair for 2017.
During the meeting, the Board also approved the certification and financing of four new water and/or wastewater projects that altogether represent an investment of more than US$17.4 million. NADB will provide loans and grants totaling an estimated US$13.4 million for construction of these projects.
Among the projects approved is a project to expand and improve the water and wastewater systems in San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora for up to US$10 million loan. The total cost of this project is US$12.15 million and will provide first-time access to sewer services for 11,974 households, which will allow an estimated 3.1 million gallons a day (mgd) of wastewater to be collected for treatment. Another 568 households will receive first-time access to drinking water services.
The remaining three projects will receive US$3.36 million in grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) through the Border Environment Infrastructure Fund (BEIF), for the construction of wastewater collection infrastructure that will benefit more than 92,000 residents in three communities.
These projects include the rehabilitation of part of a collector main (Collector Poniente), as well as the replacement of a few related sub-collectors, in the northwestern area of Tijuana, Baja California. The US$3 million total project cost will reduce the risk of line failures, which have resulted in wastewater spills to the Tijuana River, a transboundary water body.
Likewise, the town of Marathon, Texas, will receive support for a project to replace the main trunk line that conveys wastewater to the treatment plant, as well as to decommission a lift station and extend the sewer system to provide first-time service to some homes. This US$1.55 million grant will benefit the entire community by preventing uncontrolled wastewater discharges, sewage backups and spills due to chronic line breaks, thereby reducing the risks of water contamination and the proliferation of waterborne diseases.
Finally, support will be provided for the construction of a wastewater collection system, including the installation of 993 residential hookups and the decommissioning of existing on-site wastewater disposal systems, for the community of Loma Blanca in the municipality of Juarez, Chihuahua. This US$1.74 million total project cost will provide first-time sewer services to 100% of the community. The new system is expected to collect about 200,000 gallons per day of wastewater for treatment.