In the first six months of 2012, the company invested $171.4 million in infrastructure improvements as part of its capital investment program, compared to $141.3 million in the same period of 2011. “The company remains on track to invest more than $300 million in 2012. Our capital expenditures are focused on pipe replacement projects to improve our distribution network and plant upgrades to enhance water quality and service reliability for our customers,” said DeBenedictis.
Aqua America remains committed to expanding its operations through its growth-through-acquisition program and has completed eight acquisitions to date in 2012. This includes the most recently announced acquisitions by Aqua America’s Pennsylvania subsidiary of the water and wastewater system assets of Total Environmental Solutions, Inc. ("TESI"), which serve approximately 2,300 people in the Beech Mountain Lakes Resort Community located in portions of Butler and Dennison townships, Luzerne County. The systems are operated by Aqua Pennsylvania’s White Haven Division, which currently provides water and wastewater service to about 20,000 people, including those in many Luzerne County municipalities. “The Beech Mountain community is an example of a tuck-in acquisition that fits nicely into our existing service territory, which already includes customers in Butler and Dennison townships,” said DeBenedictis. “Once again, we are acquiring assets and customers within our existing footprint and maximizing our economies of scale, which benefits our customers as well as the company."
In late 2011, certain Aqua America and Penn Virginia operating subsidiaries entered into a joint venture to form Aqua — PVR Water Services, LLC to construct and operate a private pipeline system to supply fresh water to certain natural gas producers drilling in the Marcellus Shale. The 18-mile steel pipeline began servicing drillers in North-Central Pennsylvania on an as-needed basis in April this year. Phase II construction of the second 18-mile stretch began in June and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. “Ensuring that water is delivered to drillers through an environmentally conscious and efficient method has inspired Aqua America and gas companies to develop a collaborative infrastructure,” said DeBenedictis. “Both local communities and drillers have already realized the benefits of these efforts through a reduction in truck traffic on local roads.”