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EPA's Role with the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) and North American Development Bank (NADBank)
Following the 1993 signature of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), two binational institutions were created to develop the environmental infrastructure of the U.S.-Mexico border region and enhance the well-being of residents in both nations. These institutions fulfill an essential role in supporting the improvement of environmental conditions in the border region.
- North American Development Bank (NADB): Exit Launched in 1994, the NADB is a financial institution, capitalized and governed equally by the United States and Mexico, which finances environmental infrastructure projects in the border region, certified by the Border Environmental Cooperation Commission.
- Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC): ExitSince 1995, the BECC has assisted border communities by designing and certifying environmental infrastructure projects on the border, based on set criteria established by the United States and Mexico.
In May 2015, the Board of Directors of the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) and the North American Development Bank (NADB) met for two days of activities in California and Baja California.
On May 13, board members and guests attended a meeting of the San Diego Chamber of Commerce; visited the Children’s Hospital of the Californias; met in Tecate with Patricia Ramirez, General Director of the local utility (CESPTE) and by Mayor Cesar Moreno, who presented water and wastewater projects certified and funded by the BECC/NADBank; toured the Rosarito I Wastewater Treatment Plant, certified and funded by the BECC and NADB; and met with Mayor Silvano Abarca in Rosarito.
On May 14, at their private meeting, the BECC/NADB Board of Directors approved the certification and financing of four new infrastructure projects in the U.S.-Mexico border region, which will receive loans and grants totaling US$24.87 million.
The BECC and NADB are jointly governed by the United States and Mexico , via a 10-member Board of Directors:
- From the federal government of the United States, the board members include the Administrator for EPA, and the Secretaries of State and Treasury.
- From the federal government of Mexico, the board members include the Secretaries for the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT), Treasury (Hacienda; SHCP), and External Relations (Secretaria de Relaciones Exteriores; SRE).
- The board also includes one state representative and one non-governmental organization from each country.
EPA has been an active participant as a member of the Board of Directors for BECC and NADB, helping to ensure that the projects approved by the Board achieve human health and/or environmental benefits, and that completed projects have achieved the anticipated results. In addition, EPA has made it a top priority that transparency and accountability continue to guide the work of the BECC and NADB.
The total number of projects funded by NADB and the amount of financing provided by NADB from its inception until December 31, 2013 is approximately US$2.25 billion in loans and grants to help finance 192 certified projects estimated to cost a total of US$5.66 billion to build. To date, 88% of the contracted financing has been disbursed to project sponsors for the implementation of 175 projects.
Of the 192 projects receiving financing from the Bank, 123 have completed construction, as well as all financing activity, except for the amortization of loans. An additional US$123.7 million in loans and grants has been approved to support eight projects, for which financing agreements are in development.