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Columbus to Improve Wastewater Treatment; Receiving Financing from Ohio EPA
Columbus will use a $2.7 million Ohio EPA low-interest loan to help fund the rehabilitation of several structures, buildings and process items at the Jackson Pike Wastewater Treatment Plant.
The Jackson Pike Wastewater Treatment Plant was built in 1935. During the last 86 years, Columbus invested significant resources into the facility to expand and upgrade it to meet the City’s growing needs. This project will include removing rust and applying protective coatings to the infrastructure to protect the investments made into the buildings and related equipment and lessen the cost of ongoing maintenance needs.
Under this project, the infrastructure undergoing rust removal and protective coating include: the centrifuge thickening building basement, sludge pit areas, tunnels, pump and blower building, grit removal building, pre-aeration building, generator building, flushing water pump station and chlorine contact tanks.
Created in 1989, the Water Pollution Control Loan Fund (WPCLF) provides below-market interest rate loans for communities to improve their wastewater treatment systems. The reduced interest rate on the $2,661,100 loan will save Columbus $388,436 compared to a conventional, market-rate loan.
In addition to improvements to publicly owned treatment works, WPCLF loans have been provided for agricultural best management practices, home sewage system improvements, landfill closures and water quality-based storm water projects. The WPCLF provides technical assistance to public wastewater systems in a variety of areas from the planning, design and construction of improvements to enhancing the technical, managerial and financial capacity of these systems. WPCLF loans also make possible the restoration and protection of some of Ohio’s highest quality water bodies through the fund’s Water Resource Restoration Sponsor Program.
Ohio EPA’s revolving loan funds are partially supported by federal grants and designed to last indefinitely through repayment of loans and investments in bonds. The loan program is managed by Ohio EPA’s Division of Environmental and Financial Assistance, with assistance from the Ohio Water Development Authority. Ohio EPA is responsible for program development and implementation, individual project coordination, and environmental and other technical reviews/approvals of projects seeking funds. The Ohio Water Development Authority provides financial management of the fund.
More information about the WPCLF is available at: epa.ohio.gov/defa/EnvironmentalandFinancialAssistance.aspx.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.