To protect our water supply, the Regional Water Authority has implemented programs that are preventative in nature. If you would like more specific information about the following programs, go to http://www.rwater.com/waterandmore/
Watershed Inspection Programs
Regional Water Authority Police Force
Source Protection Program
Waste Inspection Program
The Regional Water Authority covers Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Killingworth, Madison, Milford, New Haven, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Prospect, West Haven and Woodbridge.
Most of our tapwater supply comes from lakes (80%) in Woodbridge, East Haven, Branford and North Branford and the balance from aquifers located in Cheshire and HamdenThe Regional Water Supply has an existing/proposed land use plan. The main areas are:
Water Supply & Facilities - 2,280 acres
Preservation Use - 3,495 acres
Recreation and Educational Use - 35 acres
(Below is a map of the recreational areas from the Regional Water Authority)
(image available in print form)
Natural Resource Uses - 14,535 acres
The Regional Water Authority sends out a yearly Water Quality Report. This report covers topic such as:
How safe is my water?
Do I need to take special precautions?
What do we do to assure your drinking water complies with federal and state
Where does my water come from?
Water quality reports for lakes and aquifers.
How can contaminants get into my drinking water?
Water Treatment and Distribution System
The Regional Water Authority for the New Haven Area has five treatment facilities. Two of the systems are for treating well water. The exact procedure for the treatment of water is not the same at all plants. This is due to the fact that not all water has the same treatment needs. Different locations (watersheds) have different characteristics due to their source water. The most common pollutants are from fertilizers and pesticides that have been used on lawns and in gardens. Fuels, solvents, oil, cars and trucks introduce other pollutants. Another source is from porous pavements that are used to prevent flooding. They inject pollutants into the groundwater. Removing vegetation during construction projects can also damage the groundwater system. Instead of moving slower and having an opportunity to penetrate into the ground, it moves much faster carrying and depositing unwanted materials in unwanted places.
Diagrams for the Distribution System and the Treatment Plant can be found in Exploring The Water World by the Regional Water Authority. The first diagram shows what happens during the distribution of water to our homes while the second shows how water is treated in the water treatment plant.
By the use of valves in the intake house, water is introduced to the water treatment plant. In the water treatment plant the water goes through the treatment process. The water is treated with coagulants to form clumps in the flocculation basin called flocs. The water is then passed through filters which strain out the flocs and other impurities. Chlorine or another disinfectant is then added to this water before it enters the storage tanks. From the storage tank it is sent through water mains to use.
The water is tested at each stage to insure the treatment is working effectively and the standards are being met. They discovered in the 1850’s that water needed to be both filtered and disinfected to make it safe from bacteria. The first treatment plant to use filters was constructed in 1872 at Poughkeepsie, New York. Although chlorine is the chief agent for disinfecting water at this time, other methods are being researched that reduce some of the harmful long-term effects of chlorine intake.
There are a number of activities a student could do in the water treatment area for a Science Fair Project.