All agreed loans

Norway. Hias IKS

Date of agreement: 9 Apr 2019
Country: Norway
Customer: Hias IKS
Amount in NOK: NOK 270 million
Amount in EUR: EUR 27.7 million
Maturity: 30 years
NACE sector / loan type: Collection, purification and distribution of water
Business area: Energy and water

Project

The framework loan agreement gives Hias IKS an option to borrow from NIB to co-finance its investments to upgrade its drinking water production and sewage treatment capacity during 2019-2022, in Southern Norway.

The main investment is to replace the outdated Hamar drinking water plant, which was built in 1954. Construction starts in 2019 and will be completed by the end of 2021. The project will improve water quality, increase capacity and renew connecting pipelines and pumping stations.

HIAS IKS will also construct a full-scale biological phosphorus removal process based on biofilm carriers for its wastewater treatment plant in Ottestad. This will replace a chemical treatment step at the plant. Construction starts in 2019 and will be completed by the end of 2021. The upgrade of the HIAS wastewater treatment plant will increase the treatment capacity, while improving the recovery of phosphorus from the wastewater treatment sludge.

Hias IKS is an inter-municipal company, which is a plant owner and service provider in the areas of water and drainage for the owning municipalities of Hamar (52%), Stange (21%), Ringsaker (20%) and Løten (7%) in Southern Norway. Hias owns and operates the water treatment facilities in Hamar and Stange and the wastewater treatment plant in Ottestad, approximately 70 kilometres of transfer line, ten pumping stations, six altitude pools, and six measuring stations. The company has about 55 employees.

Fulfilment of NIB's mandate

Drinking water investment:
Productivity: The drinking water treatment capacity will increase by around 30%, from 300 l/s to 400 l/s. Moreover, the municipal water distribution network needs rehabilitation due to considerable water losses. Around 90,000 people are dependent on the supply from the plant. The plant will cover the supply until 2050 assuming an annual population increase by one percent.

Wastewater treatment investment:
Productivity: The investment will improve public services by expanding and improving the quality of wastewater infrastructure and providing sufficient flexibility to better meet environmental standards. The anticipated growth in the region will add to higher pressure and expectations regarding efficient and economically sustainable wastewater services.

Environment: The chemical treatment step at the plant will be replaced by biological removal of both organic matter and phosphorus, using a new treatment method developed and patented by HIAS together with their partners. The benefits of biological removal of phosphorus are that it requires less treatment basin volume, it results in more concentrated sludge i.e. smaller volumes, the usage of precipitation chemicals is avoided, and the treated sludge will contain phosphorus in a more bioavailable form for use as fertilizer.

Upgrading the biogas production improves operational safety, reduces unwanted emissions and increases the amount of gas produced. Improved biogas production, together with avoiding the use of precipitation chemicals, will reduce the carbon footprint of the wastewater treatment. This will contribute to HIAS’ target to become carbon-neutral by 2020.

Sustainability summary

No significant sustainability issues have been identified.

Expected annual environmental impacts related to the investment:
Recovery of 28 tonnes phosphorus as struvite
Avoided use of 1,500 tonnes precipitation chemicals
Increased capacity
Reduced water losses

Press release

NIB signerer lånerammeavtale for finansiering av vannbehandling i Sør-Norge