Campaign highlights importance of clean and safe water supply in JoCo

On Oct. 21, the Board of County Commissioners signed a proclamation declaring, Oct. 21, Imagine a Day Without Water day. This national campaign recognized in Johnson County calls attention to the infrastructure that brings water to and from homes and businesses and is essential to the quality of life and economic vitality of our area. Johnson County Wastewater and the Johnson County Stormwater Management Program play an important role in ensuring the health and safety of local waterways.

“Imagine a Day Without Water is a great opportunity to educate residents on where their water comes from, where it goes and the continued need to invest in our water infrastructure,” said Lee Kellenberger, Johnson County Stormwater program manager.

The county’s stormwater program assists cities with reducing flooding risk to roads and buildings. It manages approximately 2,000 miles of storm sewer pipes and helps protect water quality of approximately 700 miles of natural streams in Johnson County. The program committed approximately $9 million to flood risk reduction projects and approximately $4 million to storm sewer system replacement projects in 2021. The county is currently wrapping up watershed masterplans, in collaboration with Johnson County cities, which identifies the largest flood and water quality risks across the county and proposes draft plans to decrease risks.

JCW serves more than 500,000 county customers by treating 52 million gallons per day of wastewater. The department provides a safe environment for more than a half million county residents. It has more than 9,000 aboveground assets, including six major treatment plants and 31 pump stations. Underground assets include more than 2,350 miles of sewer line, including approximately 59,000 manholes, approximately 24 miles of active low-pressure sewers and 42 miles of active force mains.

“Wastewater treatment is important, not only for protecting our stream health, but also for protecting the health of our community, said Tamara Lorenzen, JCW assistant chief engineer, integrated planning. “If we didn’t have wastewater treatment, we would be much more susceptible to the transmission of diseases. Wastewater treatment is integral to keeping our communities healthy.” 

Watch a video to learn more about the JCW and Johnson County Stormwater Management Program.

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