Barbourville Utilities was once again recognized as a Gold Seal optimized plant for meeting the optimization standards 100% of the time in 2017. Only 13 other plants in Kentucky earned this recognition from the Area-Wide Optimization Program (AWOP), a multi-state initiative administered through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency which encourages drinking water systems to voluntarily achieve optimization goals that go beyond regulatory requirements. Kentucky is one of 26  participating states. 

The other Kentucky utilities to achieve the Gold Seal rating for 2017 include: Bullock Pen Water District, Glasgow Water Company – Plant A, Greenup Water System, Jackson County Water Association, Jamestown Municipal Water Works, Kentucky American Water Co. – Plant B, Laurel County Water District No. 2, Lawrenceburg Water and Sewer Department, Liberty Water Works, Logan Todd Regional Water Commission, McCreary County Water District – Plant B, and Rattlesnake Ridge Water District.

This marks the 12th year in a row that Barbourville Utilities has been recognized by AWOP with it’s Gold Seal award.

Since purchasing the water system in April 1940, Barbourville Utilities has been committed to investing in state-of-the-art facilities and new water delivery methods that bring cleaner water to its customers. In 1985, after having treated water from the Cumberland River for more than 40 years, Barbourville Utilities installed a 26-mile raw water pipe to pump water from Laurel Lake. The $7 million project provides a cleaner supply of raw water to Barbourville and a major portion of Knox County, up to 3,000,000 gallons per day. The Cumberland River provides an emergency backup supply of water if needed.

In 1993, Barbourville Utilities began construction of a $5 million water treatment plant in Heidrick. This facility has the capacity to treat more than 4 million gallons of water per day, and has received a number of awards, including the Kentucky League of Cities Award for Outstanding Public Works Project and the AWWA Award for Outstanding Water Plant Operations. Three employees operate the facility, along with one lab technician. All plant operators are certified by the State Division of Water.

For additional information about the recent AWOP awards: https://kydep.wordpress.com/2018/07/19/energy-and-environment-cabinet-recognizes-42-water-treatment-plants-with-optimization-awards/

To learn more about AWOP: https://www.epa.gov/dwstandardsregulations/optimization-program-drinking-water-systems

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