U.S. Water News Online
DES MOINES, Iowa -- Pumped storage projects, like good
make good neighbors, at least that's the hope of the Des Moines Water Works. In order
to reduce the water treatment requirements during peak demand periods of its
supply system, the water works plans to pump treated water 2,500 feet below
ground level into the Jordan Aquifer for future use.
While the city council of Ankeny, Iowa, a Des Moines suburb, has
use of two of its wells for the pumped storage project, officials of another
suburb, Altoona, have expressed concerns about possible effects on drinking
water quality. Altoona is one of only a few Des Moines-area cities that use
the Jordan Aquifer as a principal water supply source. City Administrator Tom
Hadden of Altoona has asked the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to
investigate the pilot project before it becomes operational this fall.
L.D. McMullen, general manager of the Des Moines Water Works, has
from a water quality standpoint, "I don't know of any negatives" of the
pumped storage proposal. McMullen said treated water would be pumped down one
Ankeny well, and untreated water would be drawn from another well a few
blocks away. He noted that aquifer storage tests in other regions of the
country have determined that there is very little mixing of the treated water
with existing groundwater.
In order for the project to proceed, permits must be granted by
department of natural resources. The timetable for the pilot project calls
for treated water to be pumped into the aquifer beginning in October or
November and then continuing for the next 11 months.
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