The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a $263 million Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan to the City of Boise, Idaho, to improve its wastewater treatment processes.
Frequent drought conditions and increased demand on water for irrigation have resulted in poorer water quality and lower levels of water in the Boise River. The City of Boise will use the loan to implement its Water Renewal Services Capital Investments Project to modernize the city’s wastewater conveyance and treatment facilities. The city will incorporate advanced treatment processes at its wastewater treatment facilities so that the high-quality effluent can be discharged into the Boise River to help increase water levels and protect water quality.
“Maintaining and upgrading water infrastructure is essential for the health of a community like Boise, which is a fast-growing city struggling with drought,” says EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox. “Thanks to this WIFIA loan, the City of Boise can upgrade wastewater treatment technology to better safeguard the Boise River and even help recharge its water supply while providing good-paying jobs.”
This is the first of two WIFIA loans that will commit a total of nearly $400 million in credit assistance and will provide funding certainty for the largest capital investment in the city’s history. By financing this first loan through WIFIA, Boise will save approximately $80 million. Construction and operation under this first loan are estimated to create approximately 1,700 jobs.
"It's an incredible opportunity and honor to have been invited to participate in the WIFIA program," says Boise Mayor Lauren McLean. "Partnering with the EPA on this low-cost loan will help keep our water renewal rates affordable for Boiseans, protect our clean water and help ensure we have the water we need as our community grows."