OSE drawing up US$100mn climate change response project

Monday, May 16, 2011

Uruguay's state-owned water utility OSE plans to spend US$100mn on a water, sanitation and flood prevention project aimed at adapting to the effects of climate change.

OSE has requested US$60mn from the World Bank to support the project.

Of the total funds, US$50mn will be used to finance short-term measures to improve the efficiency and increase the resilience of water and sanitation systems. This involves overhauling water treatment plants, optimizing wastewater and groundwater extraction systems, repairing equipment and reducing unbilled volumes, according to a World Bank project document.

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Another US$25mn will go towards the project's climate change component, which aims to assess water demand management, water reuse, train OSE staff, finance hydro-meteorological equipment, and develop climate change indicators and instruments to assist OSE's public communication efforts and decision-making process.

The third stage is budgeted at US$18mn and involves supporting the environmental sustainability of the Santa Lucía watershed in Canelones department and the Sauce lagoon in Maldonado department.

Finally, the project's stages four and five involve US$5mn for technical assistance and institutional strengthening and US$2mn for project management and supervision, among other things.

The World Bank's board is due to make a decision on the loan on March 20, 2012.