Show All Answers
Groundwater connected to surface water sources could be considered renewable if it is replenished as described above. However, the Denver Basin Aquifers can be several thousand feet below ground surface where hydrologic activity does not, for practical purposes, replenish these aquifers.
ACWWA is currently under Stage One - Voluntary Watering Restrictions, for all areas and no fines are being assessed.
It is an abbreviation for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances which are manmade chemicals used in metal plating and a wide variety of consumer products including fire-suppressing foam, carpets, paints, polishes and waxes. The most studied types of PFAS are perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluoroctanesulfonic acid (PFOS). Other monitored PFAS are for PFNA, PFHxS, and PFBS.
ACWWA’s drinking water is treated at blended reverse-osmosis purification plants at either the Joint Water Purification Plan (JWPP) or in partnership with Brighton’s reverse-osmosis purification plant. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “high-pressure membranes, such as reverse-osmosis (RO), has proven extremely effective at removing PFAS, should any be introduced into the system.” According to the American Water Works Association (AWWA), “membrane filtration (RO) is an excellent, broad spectrum way to remove PFAS.” You can read the AWWA’s PFAS article on our website.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set a health advisory level for PFAS in drinking water not to exceed 70 parts per trillion (ppt) for the combined amount of PFOS and PFOA. That is the level, or amount, below which no harm is expected from these chemicals, based on daily consumption over a lifetime.
• Recently seven PFAS testing samples were taken from ACWWA at source-water intakes from alluvial and groundwater wells (before the raw-water is treated). Of the seven tests taken, four samples had no detection, and three showed results of 10, 12, and 13 parts-per-trillion (PPT), which were well below the EPA’s 70 PPT regulation. These were PFAS tests taken before water treatment.
• Of the three samples detecting PFAS at ACWWA’s source-water intakes, two of them were from wells used for irrigation only, so no inclusion into ACWWA’s drinking water supply. The other well test was from an alluvial well (a shallow well). This well either goes directly into a water storage tank before being used by any customer and is blended with other water sources, so any delivery of this water would be further diluted or it goes to our water purification (RO) plant which also mitigates any PFAS.
The CDPHE regulates PFAS based on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) advisories. The EPA established a health advisory level for two of the chemicals in the Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) family. A health advisory level is to safeguard people, especially sensitive groups, with a margin of protection. This advisory is for PFOA and PFOS combined at 70 parts per trillion.
Here are some ways to reduce your exposure to lead:1. When water has been standing in your pipes, run the cold water tap until the water gets noticeably colder. The lower temperature indicates you have cleared the water that has been standing in the pipes.2. Use only water from the cold water tap for drinking, cooking, and for making baby formula. Hot tap water dissolves lead faster and is likely to contain higher levels of lead if present.3. When repairing or replacing plumbing, insist on lead-free solder and lead-free fixtures.
Odors are a natural part of the substances handled and treated at any wastewater treatment plant. Odors are typically contained to the wastewater treatment plant site; but occasionally odors drift from the plant site depending on weather conditions and wind direction.
Routine treatment operations are designed to reduce the amount of odors present; however, certain weather conditions and equipment maintenance may lessen the effectiveness of these routine odor control operations.
Most of the odors detected in and around wastewater treatment plants are signals that nature’s treatment process is working; organic matter is decomposing and pollutants are being removed from the wastewater.
As the table Odorous Compounds In Wastewater shows, three major odorous compounds naturally occurring in the treatment process, hydrogen sulfide, amines and mercaptans, are detectable by the human nose at extremely low concentrations.
Odorous Compounds In Wastewater
Recognition Threshold parts per million
From Table 2.1, Odor Control in Wastewater Treatment Plants, 1995, WEF & American Society of Civil Engineers
Were it not for odor control measures, all wastewater treatment processes are capable of emitting odors.
ACWWA currently operates the Lone Tree Creek Water Reuse Facility (LTCWRF) using best management practices that ensure the facility processes are operating in an effective manner. If the processes are operating correctly, then odors are kept to a minimum. The best management practices followed by ACWWA are listed below:
First of all, it is important to understand that odors are generated from every phase of wastewater management, including collection, treatment, and disposal, and that odors are impossible to prevent. Please wait at least one hour before you consider calling our office. Most odors, if detected, are temporary and will dissipate as quickly as they occur. If the odor persists for over an hour and occurs in the same location you originally noticed it, you may call ACWWA, 303-790-4830, to inform the staff you detect an odor. Staff will ask you for the following information:
- Your name, address, and phone number;
- Information about the odor; such as, what time you noticed it, is it still noticeable, a description of the odor (refer to the Odorous Compounds In Wastewater table) and how strong is the odor.
Staff will record all of the complainant’s information described above; as well as, temperature, humidity, weather conditions, wind velocity, and wind direction.
All of the information combined helps staff determine if the odor is being emitted from the LTCWRF or from elsewhere, and most importantly if there is anything beyond best management practices that can be done to correct the issue.
If discoloration occurs, try running only the cold water at one faucet for about 5 minutes and you should see that the water becomes clear. (Note that running the hot water, rather than cold water, pulls from the hot water heater and may delay or cause the water to not run clear.)
If the water doesn’t clear up after 5 minutes, wait for a few hours and try running the cold water only again. If the water is still discolored, please contact us so we can investigate why the water continues to have discoloration. Even if you are in an apartment or don’t pay your water bill direct, it’s important to let us know.
You may call the office at 303-790-4830 or email us.
If the water is discolored due to minerals, such as iron and manganese, the water remains safe to drink. It does look bad and we cannot blame you for not wanting to drink it. If your water is discolored, try running the cold water for 5-10 minutes. If it doesn’t clear up, please contact ACWWA at 303-790-4830, or email us.
It is recommended that you do not wash clothes when there is any discoloration in the water to avoid the possibility that it could stain any clothing - especially whites. If you have any further questions and / or continue to experience any ongoing discoloration in your water, please contact ACWWA at 303-790-4830, or via email.