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Water Quality

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The core purpose of the Anchorage Water & Wastewater Utility is to safeguard the health and welfare of the public and the environment. The phrase has special meaning for us as Alaskans, where we revere the pristine nature of the wilderness around us.

We believe our source water quality is unparalleled. Derived from runoff from the snowfields and glaciers of their Chugach mountain watersheds, our surface sources at Eklutna Lake and Ship Creek are free of any potential effects of human activity. Similarly, our wells tap into aquifers carrying water at depth from those mountain sources.

Our drinking water treatment processes remove any particulate materials from the runoff, including the fine silt ground by glacier ice from contact with ancient bedrock. We maintain levels of hypochlorite disinfectant and fluoride in the water system in keeping with recommendations from national health agencies and mandates of local codes and the federal Environmental Protection Agency. Testing is regularly performed throughout the water distribution system to ensure drinking water quality. Details are available on our  Drinking Water Quality page.

Safeguarding the environment requires a commitment to efficient operation and maintenance of the sewer system and treatment of sewage prior to discharge to remove impurities. Wastewater Discharge permits are authorized by the State of Alaska for the Girdwood and Eagle River Wastewater Treatment Facilities , and by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for the John M. Asplund Wastewater Plant at Point Woronzof. These agencies are tasked with ensuring that wastewater discharges do not adversely affect habitat for aquatic life, including critical habitat for endangered species, such as the Cook Inlet Beluga Whale. Our three wastewater plants have an enviable record of permit compliance, regularly performing better than the requirements of the facility permits. All three plants have been awarded Peak Performance Awards by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies on multiple occasions.