BPU Celebrates National Drinking Water Week May 6-12
The Kansas City Board of Public Utilities (BPU), in coordination with the American Water Works Association (AWWA), is undertaking promotional efforts to recognize the vital role water plays in our community, recognizing National Drinking Water Week from May 6-12, 2018.
When people turn on a faucet they expect clean quality water to come from the tap. From the food they eat to the clothes they wear, water is an essential resource to virtually everything people do. Whether the source is ground or surface water, the end product is the result of a thorough process to make sure it is safe for everyone to drink.
One of BPU’s missions is to provide safe, quality water to the community upon demand. For more than 100 years, BPU has succeeded in this area. Today, it serves over 51,000 water customers in an area of approximately 152 square miles. The utility’s state-of-the-art water system has the capacity to pump 72 million gallons of water a day (MGD), including one water treatment facility; three major pump stations; 1,000 miles of water pipes and two of the nation’s largest horizontal collector wells.
BPU is one of the top-rated public water utilities in the country, one of only a handful to receive the Partnership for Safe Water Directors Award. The Partnership for Safe Water is a voluntary program between BPU (as well as other participating water utilities) and the following water authorities: the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the American Water Works Association, the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies and the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators, all of whom help to sponsor the program. Less than one percent of all utilities nationwide receive this award, and BPU was the first and only utility in the metro area to receive this honor.
BPU has also received the Platinum Award for Utility Excellence from the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA), one of a select few utilities in the country to receive this recognition. The award recognized BPU’s accomplishments in applying competitive business strategies to meet the expectations of drinking water consumers and municipal leaders. AMWA is the organization for the nation’s largest public drinking water utilities.
As BPU promotes the importance of clean, potable, tap water in the community, below are a few interesting facts for consideration.
- BPU’s water is not taken from the Missouri River, but rather from an aquifer that lies deep beneath the river which gets its water from melting ice from mountain ranges in Wyoming and Montana.
- When drinking water is treated with fluoride (as BPU does to all of its water), it has been shown to prevent at least 25% of cases of tooth decay in both children and adults.
- The average adult body is made up of about 60% water. This is why it’s so important to stay hydrated.
- A leaky faucet that drips once a second can waste over 2,600 gallons of water per year.
- The average person in the U.S. uses 80-100 gallons of water per day (most of which is taken up by flushing the toilet!)
Providing quality drinking water is essential to the health and wellness of Wyandotte County and the community. The work that BPU performs each day ensures that the water delivered to its customers consistently exceeds expectations. It is committed to providing the best drinking water in the nation today, and for the generations that follow.
BPU’s water department was originally created in 1909, and its electric utility was operational in 1912. The purpose of the utility, then and to this day, is to provide the highest quality electric and water services at the lowest possible cost. Today the publicly owned utility serves approximately 65,000 electric and 51,000 water customers, primarily in Wyandotte County, Kansas. The mission of the utility and its employees is “to focus on the needs of our customers, to improve the quality of life in our community while promoting safe, reliable and sustainable utilities.” BPU’s Web site is www.bpu.com.