A U.S. small business will use a loan from the Overseas Private Investment Corp., (OPIC) to construct a wastewater treatment facility in a city in northern Mexico, providing important support to its agricultural sector and relief from a 12-year drought, OPIC Acting President and CEO Ross Connelly announced.
OPIC will provide a $3.3 million loan to Lemna de Mexico, a subsidiary of Minnesota-based Lemna Corp., for the construction of a wastewater treatment facility in Cuauhtemoc in Chihuahua state. The plant is currently under construction and due to be completed in July 2005.
Completion of the plant will enable Cuauhtemoc’s agricultural sector to eliminate the raw sewage currently used in irrigation and reduce its reliance on groundwater resources, providing important relief to a region that has suffered a 12-year drought. In addition, using treated wastewater instead of pumped groundwater and surface water will help the state of Chihuahua meet its water debt to Texas under the bilateral Treaty of 1944. The facility will make Cuauhtemoc one of the first medium-sized cities in Mexico to comply with the Mexican government’s mandate to treat municipal wastewater by December 2007.
"This project will support the development of Mexico’s water infrastructure and agricultural sector, mitigate the effects of drought, and assist Texas’s farm sector, as well," said Connelly. "OPIC is pleased to work with a U.S. small business on a project with so many mutual benefits for the United States and Mexico."
Lemna chairman and founder Viet Ngo said, "we are eager to assist small and medium sized communities across Mexico in meeting the federally mandated requirements using our patented innovative technologies."