In August, we celebrate national Water Quality Month. This month, we celebrate the people who find solutions to our water problems in the face of global challenges. At KJ, we strive to improve access to safe water, reliable sanitation and reuse of wastewater, and remediation and restoration of compromised water sources this month and every month.
National Water Quality Month was founded in 2005 by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to promote better understanding of water quality issues, conservation efforts, and the importance of safe, clean drinking water to our communities and households. With increasing pressure on our drinking water systems from drought, emerging contaminants, and shifting populations, we cannot take access to high quality drinking water for granted.
Fresh water accounts for just three percent of water on our planet. Much of this fresh water is locked up in glaciers and icecaps. With just over 30 percent of fresh water available as groundwater and surface water, we need to carefully manage this necessary and finite resource. It may be hard to believe, but lakes, wetlands, rivers, and swamps make up less than .01 percent of the water on the earth.
We have come to expect that our tap water will be readily available, inexpensive, and safe-to-use. We use treated drinking water to shower, water lawns, wash cars, and more. But as population grows and our water needs increase, the impacts of extreme weather and extended droughts across the country have pushed our freshwater resources to their limits. The demand for water resources continues to increase even while supplies of freshwater are decreasing or becoming compromised.
Water Quality in the News
Climate change, drought, salinization, and “forever” chemicals are polluting our freshwater resources. We need to rethink how we are using our water. Legislation, conservation, and innovation will be needed to continue to provide clean, safe water for people and the environment.
Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS):
- “Biden Administration to Restrict Cancer-Causing ‘Forever Chemicals’”
- “Lake Tahoe’s Clear Water Is Brimming With Tiny Plastics”
- “Colorado River has lost 10tn gallons of water since 2000 due to climate crisis”
- “Is the West’s water crisis spreading? Drought blankets Midwest, America’s Breadbasket”
- “Salt in water sources becoming worrisome in D.C. region, experts warn”:
KJ’s Commitment to Water Quality
KJ’s commitment to water quality has been central to our mission since the company was founded over 100 years ago. Our engineers and scientists recognize that water management requires a broad view and innovative approaches to solving water quality issues. Our Applied Research Group and water sector Communities of Practice (COP) are composed of scientists and engineers working on major research initiatives in the water, wastewater, and recycled water fields using new technologies and treatment processes. These professionals provide in-house expertise on current research in improving water treatment and management. KJ scientists identify third-party funding or grants for demonstration projects to help our team find the right technology or solution for client issues. For the past five years, KJ has focused on three main research thrusts:
- Reducing wastewater treatment energy costs
- Improving resource recovery during wastewater treatment, and
- Advanced treatment of impaired water sources such as PFAS remediation.
KJ COPs develop networked internal teams of engineers and scientists to share project insights, recent research, and technical innovations to keep KJ at the forefront of industry solutions to these issues and more. Our One Water COP brings together stormwater, wastewater and drinking water, and addresses municipal, industrial, commercial, and residential uses under a unified framework for better planning and increased resilience to water stresses. Our Utility and Asset Management COP focuses on techniques to improve and maintain the infrastructure that treats and transports our water to where we need it, reducing costs and improving performance while helping utilities plan for the future. Our Natural Resource Management group addresses the need to consider ecological health.
Want to learn more about how KJ can help with your water quality? Contact us here