Council Approves Drinking Water Additive

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Article courtesy of Gord Young | June 16, 2015 | The Nugget | Shared as educational material

Dosing of the city drinking water with an additive aimed at reducing corrosion and cutting back on waste is expected to soon get underway.

City politicians unanimously agreed Monday to begin using the additive – ENV CORTROL MAX – on a trial basis.

Council heard from staff previously that the additive, which contains small amounts of zinc and phosphate, is fully approved and safe for drinking water and that it has benefited other communities, including West Nipissing.

The additive is expected to reduce corrosion within the distribution system, improve discoloured water and cut back on chlorine demand, leading to fewer blow-offs.

The six-month trial is estimated to cost about $150,000, including the purchase of necessary pumping equipment.

Coun. Mark King said Monday he’s looking forward to seeing if the additive will result in savings for the city.

It’s estimated use of the additive could lead to a 10% to 15% reduction in chlorine demand, as well as the eventual shut down of some of the 50 or so blow-off sites around the city. That would help to reduce the overall operating costs of the treatment plant, which shells out about $800,000 annually in hydro alone.

About 40% of the water processed at the city’s treatment plant never makes it to a tap, approximately 25% of which is due to blow-offs needed to ensure chlorine levels remain above regulatory limits and that its byproduct (THMs) remains below regulatory limits. Flushing is also required to prevent water from becoming discoloured.

The additive is also expected to extend the life of the city’s underground infrastructure by creating a zinc barrier within the pipe that will prevent corrosion.

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