Forty-nine water treatment plants in Kentucky have been recognized by the Energy and Environment Cabinet for their demonstrated success in producing drinking water in 2011 that consistently met or exceeded state water quality standards.
The 49 systems honored are among 155 public and private water treatment plants in the state that participated in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Area-Wide Optimization Program. The program challenges plants to reduce turbidity levels below those required by state and federal regulations. Turbidity, or cloudiness, of water can be caused by sand and dirt, as well as bacteria and viruses. Particle removal is critical for producing water that is free of dirt and microbes that can cause waterborne diseases.
Two of the water systems received an AWOP Champion Award. This award takes into account the number of years the system has been optimized, as well as the dedication of the operating staff. Hardin County Water District No. 2 won in the category for large population served (more than 10,000 customers). The Williamsburg Water Treatment Plant won the Champion Award for small population served (fewer than 10,000 customers).
Six treatment plants received special recognition for achieving the optimized water quality goals 100 percent of the time in 2011 - Cave Run Regional Water Commission, Columbia/Adair County Water Treatment Plant, Greensburg Water Works, Hardin County Water District No. 2, Jackson County Water Association and Kentucky American in Richmond.
Water systems recognized for meeting those goals 95 percent of the time in 2011 include Green River Valley Water District and Hardin County Water District No. 1.