Rate Setting Process is Customer Driven and Community Focused
EWEB’s Board of Commissioners is considering rate changes to help maintain reliable utility services and fund critical investments in Eugene’s water and electric infrastructure.Find Out More
National Preparedness Month: Older adults take control in 1, 2, 3
We know older adults can face greater risks when it comes to the extreme weather events and emergencies we face, especially if they are living alone, are low-income, have a disability, depend on electricity for medical needs, or live in rural areas.Find Out More
Bethel neighbors boost emergency preparedness during Emergency Water Station event
Staff gave out about 300 emergency water containers to enthusiastic community members eager to learn more about the water station.Find Out More
How does EWEB recover the costs of serving customers
Here’s an overview of the three primary ways EWEB recovers the costs of serving customers and generates the funds needed to keep the power on and the water flowing.Find Out More
Stay cool during extreme heat events
With temperatures forecasted to reach over 100 degrees over the next several days, we've prepared some tips and tricks to help you stay cool.Find Out More
Women in STEM: Meet our servant leader and maker of tough decisions
Karen Kelley, Chief Operations Officer at EWEB, describes herself as a "servant leader," offering support and mentoring to four division managers at EWEB.Find Out More
Women in STEM: Meet the woman responsible for managing our wholesale energy agreements to ensure we meet our customers energy needs
Megan Capper, the Energy Resource Manager at EWEB, began her career working in economics at BPA before joining the power planning department EWEB, ensuring we can meet the energy needs of our our customers today, tomorrow and 20 years from now.Find Out More
Substations – The resilient spine of EWEB’s electric system
The substation redundancy ensures reliable power continues to flow to homes and businesses despite unexpected equipment failures and routine maintenance.Find Out More
Trends that are impacting your utility rates
Needed infrastructure investments and rising costs of operations will require increases in the price of water and electric services.Find Out More
Women in STEM: Meet the water quality specialist who ensures the safety of Eugene's drinking water
Brenda Casarez began working at EWEB in 2009, collecting samples from all over the water system testing for different contaminants.Find Out More
Wildfire season is here – tips and safety precautions
Temperatures are heating up with weather forecasts anticipating temperatures up to 99 degrees in Eugene and the surrounding areas on the 4th of July.Find Out More
EWEB will close College Hill Reservoir site for Fourth of July
EWEB will continue the annual closure of its College Hill Reservoir over the Fourth of July holiday. For the past several years, EWEB has restricted access to the reservoir surface around the Fourth of July to ensure people do not set off fireworks which can damage the roof and potentially impact drinking water quality.Find Out More
EWEB, Partners Receive $7.5M Grant from NOAA
EWEB, McKenzie Watershed Council, McKenzie River Trust and the U.S. Forest Service are working to improve major tributary for water quality, wildfire resiliency and fish habitat.Find Out More
EWEB begins major water pipeline upgrades
This summer, EWEB is launching several construction water pipeline projects to enhance the reliability and earthquake resiliency of drinking water service for Eugene residents.Find Out More
Electric vehicles benefit customers and the community
The rising cost of gasoline and growing consequences of climate change are driving more and more people to look for alternatives to gas-powered vehicles. And EVs offer benefits that go beyond the gas pump.Find Out More
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EWEB drinking water meets federal and state health standards again
April 28, 2023 • Jen Connors, EWEB Communications
Good news for Eugene residents: your drinking water once again met safety standards for every type of contaminant regulated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Oregon Health Authority.
EWEB produces more than 23 million gallons of drinking water every day. We have never failed to meet the standards.
Toxic chemicals from agricultural, urban development, waste disposal and forestry practices can get into groundwater, lakes, and rivers, contaminating water for humans, animals and aquatic plants.
EWEB tests above and beyond for all regulated contaminants, including per– and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS chemicals, which are known as “forever chemicals.” PFAS chemicals are used for waterproofing and found in items such as stain-resistant carpets, clothing and non-stick cookware. They can increase risk of cancers and birth defects as well as other health problems.
The EPA recently proposed new regulations for water utilities to test for PFAS chemicals. Though the regulations have yet to take effect, EWEB is already in compliance. The utility has been testing for PFAS since 2013 and has not found any of the forever chemicals in the water drawn from EWEB’s intake on the McKenzie River, nor in the treated water EWEB delivers to customers.
“EWEB follows the multiple barrier approach to safe drinking water,” said EWEB Chief Operations Officer Karen Kelley. “That begins with protecting water at the source — the McKenzie River — and progresses through filtration, disinfection, distribution, storage, and sampling of the water throughout the entire process before we deliver it to homes and businesses across Eugene.”
For decades EWEB has worked with partners in the McKenzie River watershed to protect Eugene’s sole source of drinking water from contamination and degradation. But climate change and aging infrastructure are increasing the dangers to drinking water.
“Hotter, dryer summers raise the risk of wildfire, harmful algal blooms and drought, all of which have the potential to impact our source water and require new and ongoing investment in water protection, monitoring and treatment,” Kelley said. “At the same time, much of Eugene’s water infrastructure is reaching the end of its useful life and needs to be upgraded or replaced.”
Ensuring safe drinking water requires robust investments in the watershed where that water originates, the treatment infrastructure that purifies it and the storage and delivery systems that ensure it comes out the tap. Community members today benefit from investments made in this system by customers decades ago. Now, EWEB is investing in projects that will benefit future generations by making the community’s water supply more resilient.
In addition to programs aimed at protecting water at the source, EWEB is renovating the Hayden Bridge Water Filtration Plant, replacing water mains, developing emergency water distribution sites, and building new water storage tanks.
With the risk of a Cascadia subduction zone earthquake looming in the Pacific Northwest, EWEB is prioritizing investing in infrastructure so it meets modern standards for earthquake safety. In 2021 EWEB started construction on new earthquake-proof water tanks near E. 40th and Patterson Street in south Eugene. When that project is completed later this year, EWEB will move on to replacing the 80-year-old College Hill Reservoir with new seismically resilient storage.
In the near future, EWEB plans to make another major investment in water reliability by building a new water treatment plant on the Willamette River, giving Eugene a crucial second source of water.
“Of the 20 largest cities in the Northwest, Eugene is the only one with a single source of drinking water,” Kelley said. “Accessing the Willamette River as a second source is an important next step to ensure we can provide drinking water to our customers in case an emergency impacts the Hayden Bridge Filtration Plant or the McKenzie River.”
Details on the quality of EWEB’s drinking water can be found in the 2022 Consumer Confidence Report.