Indianapolis-based Citizens Energy Group has announced nearly $450 million in wastewater system improvements over the next two years. The utility says the projects will reduce sewer overflows and eliminate failing septic tanks.

May 7, 2014

News Release

Indianapolis, Ind. — Citizens Energy Group announced today it will invest more than $444 million in its wastewater system over the next two years. This investment will continue Citizens’ program to reduce sewer overflows into rivers and streams and eliminate failing septic tanks that are endangering human health and the environment.

“With four billion gallons of raw sewage going into our waterways each year and septic tanks at risk of failing each day, Citizens has a lot of work to do,” said Carey Lykins, President and CEO of Citizens Energy Group. “The problems with our antiquated sewer system come from years of underinvestment. It will now take years of investment to make necessary changes.”

Infrastructure improvement projects over the next two years will be funded by a wastewater rate increase recently approved by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC). The increase will raise the average residential sewer bill about $10 per month starting in May and another $3 per month beginning in October.

Since acquiring the sewer system in 2011 from the City of Indianapolis, Citizens has invested $500 million to eliminate two billion gallons of raw sewage overflows each year. Citizens has also completed projects to eliminate nearly 8,000 failing septic systems.

Citizens is currently constructing the 8-mile long Deep Rock Tunnel Connector, the first leg of the DigIndy Project. DigIndy is a 25-mile network of underground tunnels designed to capture and store raw sewage. When complete in the year 2025, DigIndy will ensure Citizens’ compliance with a federal mandate to reduce sewer overflows by 95 percent.

In addition to DigIndy, over the next two years Citizens will expand its wastewater treatment plants, improve the wastewater collection system, and eliminate another 1,600 failing septic tanks.

“We are just beginning to reap the benefits from the improvements we're making to our wastewater system,” said Lykins. “Our investments over the next decade will revitalize neighborhoods, fuel economic development and enhance recreational opportunities; all while creating thousands of jobs.”

About Citizens Energy Group

Citizens Energy Group is a Public Trust providing safe and reliable utility services to about 400,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in the Indianapolis area. The Public Trust means its utilities are managed only for the benefit of customers and the community. Additional information is available online at – Facebook – Twitter – YouTube

Source: Citizens Energy Group

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