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I know where our water comes from, and it is good!

I got e-mail suggesting that Americans should find out where their water comes from in honor of World Water Day (today, March 22) and to help us watch out for our families’ health. It seems that many people don’t know. I do know where our water comes from — the Clinch River. The intake is on Melton Hill Lake, about a mile downstream from the Solway Bridge, and the treatment plant is on top of Pine Ridge near Y-12.

The US EPA requires drinking water suppliers to report annually on the sources and quality of their water — some people find it odd that the city mails its annual water quality report to residents each year, but it’s because of the federal requirement, which is supposed to give consumers confidence in their water.

Oak Ridge enjoys good quality water, but maintaining that quality does depend on good decisions (on watershed land use, for example) and sensible behavior by our city and our upstream neighbors, as well as a continuing public investment in things like treatment facilities and delivery systems.


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