Utah’s water best in the nation – due to ozone in drinking water

OREM, UTAH (ABC 4 UTAH) – In Utah, water is big business. Especially when it comes to processing it.  For 11 straight years the Central Utah Water Conservancy District has been recognized as being one of the leading plants in its industry.
According to the Partnership for Safe Water the water processed at the CUWCD is the best in the nation.
David Pitcher the Assistant General Manager said, “This process improvement project has made it so that we can provide reliable water that could come out of the tap that most people take for granted.”
The water from Mother Earth and Old Man Winter goes through a series of processes including conventional sedimentation.
“It has been steered in multiple stages decreasing energy that would allow it to develop a particle that will settle out,” said Lead Operator Joe Huish.
“Ozone is a really effective way of getting rid of all those tastes and odors as well as some other benefits that ozone for us,” said Huish. ” For us what it does is it reacts with organics in the water. It does a lot for taste and odors for us and makes us able to make really good tasting water.”
American Water Works Association acknowledged the great tasting water by making it the best in the Intermountain Section Conference, which includes Utah and parts of Idaho.
“We have given ourselves all the tools that there are pretty much to drink the water,” said Huish.
The plant that produces the best water in the state was renamed after the man who took time to teach each one of his employees one thing Huish said, “No complacency ever is our main rule.”
Thursday, the plant was renamed the Don A. Christiansen Regional Water Treatment Plant.
Gene Shawcroft the plants general manager said, “It has received a number of awards that other plants are striving to achieve and that recognizes and symbolizes to us the effort Don made over a career, to make sure we had sufficient water, to make sure we had safe drinking water.”
Some bosses at the plant say none of this could be possible without their employees.
“We are very blessed to have workers, operators who their main objective is to provide safe reliable water that is public health,” said Pitcher.
CUWCD will head to Chicago to participate in the American Water Works Association National Conference water taste testing. The contest will be held in June of 2016.

Drinking water in the USA is getting more expensive

As infrastructure ages and water quality decreases the cost to provide safe drinking water in the USA has increased.  The article below, illustrates various issues that municipal water plants are experiencing to delivery high quality, safe, and reliable drinking water to the customers.

One option to lower chemical costs, improve water quality, and eliminate hard to remove chemicals is ozone.  Follow this link to read more about how ozone can be used in municipal drinking water effectively.

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — Standing at the edge of the Great Lakes, the world’s largest surface source of fresh water, this city of 280,000 seems immune from the water-supply problems that bedevil other parts of the country. But even here, the promise of an endless tap can be a mirage.

Algae blooms in Lake Erie, fed by agriculture runoff and overflowing sewers, have become so toxic that they shut down Toledo’s water system in 2014 for two days. The city is considering spending millions of dollars to avoid a repeat.

Similar concerns about water quality are playing out elsewhere. Farm fertilizers, discarded pharmaceuticals, industrial chemicals and even saltwater from rising oceans are seeping into many of the aquifers, reservoirs and rivers that supply Americans with drinking water.

researchers trying to find cost effective methods of treating drinking water
In this Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015 photo, Thomas Bridgeman, an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at the University of Toledo, left, along with graduate students Kristen Hebebrand and Ken Gibbons, gather water samples from Lake Erie near the City of Toledo water intake crib, approximately 2.5 miles off the shore of Curtice, Ohio. In the wake of Toledo’s water crisis, Ohio has put limits on when and where farmers can spread fertilizer and manure on fields. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

 

Combating these growing threats means cities and towns must tap new water sources, upgrade aging treatment plants and install miles of pipeline, at tremendous cost.

Consider tiny Pretty Prairie, Kansas, less than an hour’s drive west of Wichita, where the water tower and cast-iron pipes need to be replaced and state regulators are calling for a new treatment plant to remove nitrates from farm fertilizers. The fixes could cost the town’s 310 water customers $15,000 each.

Emily Webb never gave a second thought to the town’s water until she became pregnant almost two years ago. That’s when she learned through a notice in the mail that the water could cause what’s known as “blue baby” syndrome, which interferes with the blood’s ability to carry oxygen.

“It just kind of scared me,” she said. “Now we don’t drink it at all.”

Instead, she and her husband stock up on well water from her parents’ home and buy bottled water even though health officials say the risk is limited to infants. When it comes time to buy their first home, she said, they will look somewhere else.

Pretty Prairie’s leaders hope to find a less expensive solution. They say the cost of a new treatment plant would drive people away and threaten the farm town’s survival.

Across the country, small towns and big cities alike are debating how much they can afford to spend to make contaminated water fit for drinking.

Safe drinking water for adults, may not be safe for infants
In this Aug. 19, 2015 photo, Jeremy and Emily Webb hold their son, Oliver, at their home in Pretty Prairie, Kan. Emily never gave a second thought to the town’s water until she became pregnant almost two years ago. That’s when she learned through a notice in the mail that the water could cause “blue baby” syndrome, which interferes with the blood’s ability to carry oxygen. “It just kind of scared me,” she says. “Now we don’t drink it at all.” (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

 

Cash-strapped cities worry that an unfair share of the costs are being pushed onto poor residents. Rural water systems say they can’t expect the few people they serve to pay for multimillion-dollar projects.

The U.S Conference of Mayors, in a report released this summer, found spending by local governments on all water-supply projects nearly doubled to $19 billion between 2000 and 2012. Despite a slowdown in recent years, it remained at an all-time high, the report said.

ozonated Bottled water is stored for safe drinking water
This Aug. 19, 2015 photo shows bottles of drinking water on the kitchen table as Emily Webb reads to her son, Oliver, at their home in Pretty Prairie, Kan. Emily never gave a second thought to the town’s water until she became pregnant almost two years ago. That’s when she learned through a notice in the mail that the water could cause “blue baby” syndrome, which interferes with the blood’s ability to carry oxygen. “It just kind of scared me,” she says. “Now we don’t drink it at all.” (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

 

“We have a real dilemma on our hands,” said Richard Anderson, author of the report. “We know we need to increase spending on water, but many houses can’t afford it, and Congress won’t increase funding.”

In California’s Central Valley, low-income farming communities have gone without clean water for years because they don’t have money to build plants to remove uranium, arsenic and nitrates. Drinking fountains at schools have been put off limits, and families spend a large share of their income on bottled water.

A study released in June by the U.S. Geological Survey found nearly one-fifth of the groundwater used for public drinking systems in California contained excessive levels of potentially toxic contaminants.

Beaches are off limits to keep water systems safe
This Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 photo, shows a warning sign for high levels of algal toxins along the beach of Maumee Bay State Park in Oregon, Ohio. Algae blooms in Lake Erie, fed by agriculture runoff and overflowing sewer pipes, have become so toxic that they shut down Toledo’s water system for two days in the summer of 2014 and have the city looking at spending millions to avoid a repeat. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

 

Compounding the problem is the drought. Because farmers are using more groundwater for irrigation, contaminants are becoming more concentrated in the aquifers and seeping into new wells.

The drought has pushed Los Angeles to plan for the nation’s largest groundwater cleanup project, a $600 million plan to filter groundwater contaminated with toxic chemicals left over from the aerospace and defense industry. Some of the water will be drawn from polluted wells abandoned 30 years ago.

In the Midwest, where shortages typically have not been a concern, more attention is being paid to farming’s effect on drinking water supplies.

Minnesota’s governor this year ordered farmers to plant vegetation instead of crops along rivers, streams and ditches to filter runoff. The water utility in Des Moines, Iowa’s largest city, is suing three rural counties to force tighter regulations on farm discharges.

And in the wake of Toledo’s water crisis, Ohio has put limits on when and where farmers can spread fertilizer and manure on fields.

“But no one really knows how well that works,” said Chuck Campbell, the city’s water treatment supervisor.

Municipal water treatment intake system for surface water
This Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015 photo shows the City of Toledo water intake crib, approximately 2.5 miles off the shore of Curtice, Ohio. Algae blooms in Lake Erie, fed by agriculture runoff and overflowing sewer pipes, have become so toxic that they shut down Toledo’s water system for two days in the summer of 2014 and have the city looking at spending millions to avoid a repeat. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

 

Given that, the city has spent $5 million in the past year to bolster its ability to cleanse water drawn from Lake Erie. It is planning a renovation that could approach $350 million and include a system that uses ozone gas to destroy toxins produced by the algae. A 56 percent water rate increase is footing most of the bill.

In many coastal areas, rising seas mean saltwater can intrude into underground aquifers and in some cases ruin existing municipal wells. It’s especially problematic in the Southeast, from Hilton Head Island in South Carolina to Florida’s seaside towns near Miami.

“Nature’s calling the shots and we’re reacting,” said Keith London, a city commissioner in Hallandale Beach, Florida, where six of eight freshwater wells are no longer usable.

The city is considering relocating wells, upgrading its treatment plant or buying water from a neighboring town.

The water that comes out of the tap in the oceanside town of Edisto Beach, South Carolina, is so salty that it corrodes dishwashers and washing machines within just a few years, resident Tommy Mann said.

While technically safe to drink, it tastes so bad that the town gives away up to five gallons of purified water a day to residents and vacationers.

Voters narrowly rejected a proposal two years ago that would have doubled water rates to pay for an $8.5 million reverse-osmosis filtering system.

Said Mann: “We’re living in a beautiful little town with Third World water.”

Aging infrastructure of municipal water treatment plants
In this Aug. 19, 2015 photo, the city water tower rises above fertilizer tanks in Pretty Prairie, Kan. The water tower and cast-iron pipes need to be replaced and state regulators are calling for a new treatment plant to remove nitrates from farm fertilizers. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

 

Ozone still a viable plan for drinking water

Ozone has long been used to treat drinking water on large and small scale applications.  As the technology becomes more proven over time, it is clear the ozone industry is staying around for the long term.

Recently the community of Emporia City voted to replace their 20 year old ozone system with a brand new ozone system at a cost of $2.6 Million.  Read more about this below:

City Commission approves Ozone replacement equipment request

Posted: Thursday, July 2, 2015 9:15 am | Updated: 9:58 am, Thu Jul 2, 2015.

The Emporia City Commission approved a request authorizing the Public Works Department to proceed with an Ozone Equipment purchase Wednesday afternoon during an active session.

The current equipment at the Water Treatment Plant uses atmospheric air and bubble diffusers and was installed in 1995, with an expected life of 15 to 20 years.

The Ozone equipment and process is the primary disinfection action at the Water Treatment Plant.

“We are replacing a piece of equipment that disinfects our water,” said Mayor Danny Giefer. “Our equipment now is out of date and we need to replace it.”

In the next few months, a qualified contractor will be chosen to install the equipment, which is slated to be completed in 2016, with a project construction cost estimate of $2.6 million.

Assistant City Manager Jim Witt said it was time to replace the old equipment.

“The equipment now is 20-plus years old,” Witt said. “LIke all equipment, parts become the issue. We pride ourselves on quality water and this is the way we can continue to ensure that quality of our water. The amount of $2.6 million is a tremendous amount of money, but it’s the way to go. Ozone replacement is shown to be an effective way to treat and purify water. We have a very efficient timeline and are hoping by the end of 2016, the equipment is all in and we won’t have to worry about it for another 15 to 20 years.”

Read full story HERE