SOURCE WATER PROTECTION
Our top priority at Pennsylvania American Water is to provide high quality, reliable water service for our customers. Collaborative efforts to protect sources of water used as drinking water supplies are an important part of maintaining high quality water, and we are working to further these efforts in the communities we serve.
Source water is water that is used as a supply for drinking. It can take the form of surface water, which flows on top of the land surface within a watershed, or groundwater, which is stored in underground aquifers in the pore spaces of soil and rock. The quantity and quality of source water depends on local watershed conditions such as climate, topography, and land use. Find out more about watersheds here.
Source water protection involves identifying potential risks that could affect the drinking water supply and seeking to reduce those risks when possible to maintain quality of the supply source. Potential risks to source water include contamination from materials that may be naturally occurring or are used, stored, and transported throughout the watershed. The types of materials vary from one location to another but typically can be associated with certain land uses such as agricultural, industrial, or residential. For more information about potential sources of contamination, click here.
There are several ways to manage risks to drinking water supplies, including regulations for material handling and land use practices to reduce contaminant impacts, and outreach to educate people about how their actions can affect source water supplies. This requires a community effort from utilities, businesses, residents, government agencies and organizations to share information and take action to protect our shared resources. In Pennsylvania, many waterways contribute to sources of community drinking water supplies, so it’s important that we all take steps to protect and improve this precious natural resource. Follow the links below to learn more about our source water protection efforts and how individuals and businesses can help reduce impacts to local waterways.
AWWA Source Water Protection Resource Community: http://www.awwa.org/resources-tools/water-knowledge/source-water-protection.aspx
River Alert Information Network (RAIN): http://www.rainmatters.org/home
ORSANCO Source Water Protection: http://www.orsanco.org/source-water-protection
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP): http://www.dep.pa.gov
Pennsylvania Source Water Protection: http://www.sourcewaterpa.org
Source Water Collaborative: http://www.sourcewatercollaborative.org/
USEPA Pollution Prevention: https://www.epa.gov/p2
USEPA Source Water Protection: http://water.epa.gov/infrastructure/drinkingwater/sourcewater/protection/index.cfm
USEPA Surf Your Watershed: http://cfpub.epa.gov/surf/locate/index.cfm
USGS PA Water Science Center: https://pa.water.usgs.gov/