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United Water Delaware

United Water Delaware Recognized for Underground Water Storage Project

Regional Award Recognizes United Water for $6 Million Underground Water Storage Project

Wilmington, DE,  Apr 30, 2010,   10:30 a.m.

United Water Delaware has received the 2010 Business and Industry Award from the multi-state Water Resources Association of the Delaware River Basin in recognition of United Water’s $6 million Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) Project.

United Water Delaware’s ASR is the first of its kind in Delaware. The process involves injecting treated surface water into an underground aquifer where it is stored for use in times of drought.  On the Governor’s “A” list to increase drinking water reserves, United Water’s ASR project is an innovative, technology-based and sustainable solution to meeting area water needs.  United Water’s ASR adds 75 million gallons to New Castle County, Delaware water supplies and is expandable to 225 million gallons.

“Recommended by the Governor’s Water Supply Coordinating Council, United Water’s ASR project represents a significant investment in the communities we serve and is a prime example of successful coordination with public water and regulatory agencies,” said United Water Delaware General Manager Susan Skomorucha.

Aquifer Storage and Recovery involves injecting drinking water into an aquifer through deep wells and then pumping it out or “recovering” it when needed.  The aquifer, an existing underground layer of water-bearing sand and gravel, essentially functions as a water bank.   Deposits are made in times when water is plentiful, typically from fall through spring.  Withdrawals occur when available surface water is restricted during dry conditions in the summer.  Like a savings account is to money, ASR is to water.  Deposits are made when extra surface water is available and withdrawn in times of shortage.

At a rate of over 200 gallons per minute, United Water Delaware first began storing drinking water 750 feet down in the Potomac Aquifer in October 2008.  ASR will provide one million gallons of drinking water a day when needed in the summer of 2010, to ensure adequate supplies during dry periods.  United Water’s ASR, the City of Wilmington’s expansion of Hoopes Reservoir, and the City of Newark’s construction of its own reservoir all received the same sound and prudent support from a broad spectrum of the Delaware water resources and regulatory community.

United Water Delaware provides water service to over 110,000 people throughout New Castle County, Delaware.  Nationwide, United Water provides water and wastewater services to 7.3 million people in the United States. In addition to owning and operating 20 regulated utilities, United Water operates 240 municipal and industrial systems through public-private partnerships and contract agreements including three of the nation's largest water and wastewater contracts. The company’s affiliate, Utility Service Company, is the nation’s leading provider of long-term water tank management contracts with municipal and industrial clients.  Founded in 1869, United Water is a subsidiary of SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT.

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