Wastewater facilities in East Providence to be upgraded under agreement with United Water

EAST PROVIDENCE, RI, March 4, 2010 -- United Water has reached agreement with the City of East Providence, RI, for a 10-year, design-build-operate (DBO) contract for the city's wastewater collection and treatment facilities...

EAST PROVIDENCE, RI, March 4, 2010 -- United Water, one of the leading providers of water and wastewater services in the nation, today announced it had reached agreement with the City of East Providence, RI, for a 10-year, design-build-operate (DBO) contract for the city's wastewater collection and treatment facilities, which provide service to roughly two-thirds of East Providence's 50,000 residents. The contract calls for United Water to begin operational responsibility for the system today, while also implementing $52.5 million worth of infrastructure and treatment process upgrades necessary to bring the collection system and plant into compliance with new state Department of Environmental Management mandates.

As a part of the agreement with the city, United Water will manage plant operations and improvements. This is expected to save the city $13 million over what was budgeted to be spent under a traditional project delivery approach. Construction is slated to begin at the plant, which was built in 1954 and upgraded in the mid-1970s, before the end of the year with a completion deadline of September 2012. In addition to the renovations at the plant, United Water is scheduled to build a new pump station at Watchemoket Cove and a wastewater pipeline by August 2013.

"We're excited to be part of the solution that helps East Providence meet its goal of providing efficient and sustainable wastewater service to its residents," said Bertrand Camus, CEO of United Water. "We fully realize that our work is critical to ensuring an environmentally sound wastewater system for the city and we look forward to making our plans a reality for all the residents of East Providence."

The treatment plant will undergo extensive upgrades including odor control systems and a biological nutrient removal (BNR) process to reduce nitrogen levels in the treated water. The new BNR process will provide an added level of treatment that will improve water quality in the Pawtucket River and Narragansett Bay.

"What the city and United Water have done is nothing short of spectacular," said Joseph S. Larisa, Jr., Mayor of East Providence. "The city and its residents receive a new wastewater treatment plant, a new pumping station and professional wastewater service, and we retain the right to set our rates and keep jobs for our workers."

United Water already operates the Bucklin Point Wastewater Treatment Facility, which serves about one-third of East Providence, for the Narragansett Bay Commission as well as the Westerly, Newport and Warren wastewater treatment facilities. The company has earned several awards from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies and the National Wastewater Pollution Control Agency for operational excellence.

About United Water
United Water is one of the nation's leading water and wastewater services providers to over 7 million people in 26 states through the dedication of its 2,600 employees. In addition to owning and operating 20 regulated utilities, United Water operates 240 municipal systems through public-private partnerships and contract agreements, including three of the nation's largest water and wastewater contracts: Indianapolis, IN, Gary, IN and Jersey City, NJ. The company's affiliate, Utility Service Company, provides water tank asset management services to over 2,000 municipal and industrial clients under long term contracts. Founded in 1869, United Water is a subsidiary of the SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT.

About Suez Environnement
Natural resources are not infinite. Each day, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT (Paris: SEV, Brussels: SEVB) and its subsidiaries deal with the challenge to protect resources by providing innovative solutions to industries and to millions of people. SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT supplies drinking water to 90 million people, provides wastewater treatment services for 58 million people and collects the waste produced by 46 million people. SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT has 65,900 employees and, with its presence on a global scale, is the world's leader exclusively dedicated to environmental services. SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT, a 35.4% GDF SUEZ affiliate, reported sales turnover of 12.3 billion euros ($17.6 billion USD) at the end of financial year 2009.

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