MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

July 20, 2013

Keep water quality in compliance

Muskogee city officials should not accept even a small infraction of water quality standards.

The city’s water plant was in violation of Environmental Protection Agency regulations for the 12-month period ending March 2013.

The plant failed to remove enough organic carbon from our water supply.

The EPA requires plants to remove 35 percent of organic carbon.

Our plant failed to do that — removing 34 to 34.5 percent for several months during the 12-month period.

Exposure to that much additional organic carbons would take years before becoming a threat to your health, according to the EPA website.

The assistant public works director said the amount of organic carbon out of compliance was “minute.”

Maybe so.

But even though the plant was out of compliance a “minute” amount, it still was out of compliance.

The EPA regulations are there for a reason.

The city should try to find out what it would take to ensure our plant stays well ahead of any water quality standard.

The problem at the plant appears to be an issue with the ever-changing quality of the water flowing into the plant.

Plant operators must constantly change the mixture of chemicals to combat the changing nature of water flowing into the plant.

That can’t be an easy job.

But citizens deserve clean water.

The city invested nearly $20 million to upgrade our water treatment plant a few years ago.

Now its time to find out what it would take to ensure our water never falls out of compliance again.

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