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Denver Water, City of Denver become long-term partners with U.S. EPA in WaterSense

Release Date: 08/06/2007
Contact Information: Frank Montarelli, 303-312-6780, montarelli.frank@epa.gov Wendy Chipp, 303-312-6603, chipp.wendy@epa.gov

EPA cites Denver, Denver Water as models for sustainable water in U.S.


    (Aug. 6, 2007, Denver, Colo.) – U.S. EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson is flying into Denver this morning specifically to praise Denver Water and the City of Denver for their bold, forward-thinking water conservation programs and to sign WaterSense partnerships with the utility and the City.

    The event, which will include EPA Administrator Johnson, EPA Assistant Administrator Ben Grumbles, Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, and Denver Water Board President Denise Maes and Vice President Penfield Tate will be held at 10:30 this morning at the Denver Water Recycling Plant, 5650 York Street.

    “By making smart use of their water resources, Denver Water and the city are ensuring their residents continue to enjoy the benefits of a clean, reliable water system for generations to come,” said EPA Administrator Johnson. “And as partners in EPA’s WaterSense program, they are promoting advances in water efficiency and keeping Denver’s environmental progress flowing into the future.”

    Mayor Hickenlooper, Denver Water board members Maes and Tate and Administrator Johnson will sign commitments to partner with each other in an innovative new water efficiency program called WaterSense. Also in attendance will be Jack Hoffbuhr, Executive Director of the American Water Works Association.

    WaterSense is a voluntary public-private partnership program designed to protect the future of our nation’s water supply by promoting the use of water-efficient products and services. WaterSense will provide an easily identifiable logo that will help consumers and professionals select products that meet EPA criteria for efficiency and performance. Examples of such products will be high-efficiency toilets that use less than 1.3 gallons per flush, efficient water irrigation systems and other indoor and outdoor home and commercial products.

    Denver Water is a leader in Region 8 as the largest water utility in the region and in Colorado, the fourth-fastest growing state in the nation, according to the 2002 Census.

    In 2006, Denver Water launched its new Tap-Smart initiative, an aggressive plan to reduce Denver area water use by 22 percent over the next 10 years and encourage permanent wise water use practices among area residents, businesses and government.

    Denver Water is progressive in its approach to planning for its water future, a model for how utilities can best incorporate all four pillars of the Sustainable Infrastructure initiative into its planning process to ensure sustainability. Increased water supply to support future growth in the Denver Metro area will come from three key sources: conservation, recycled water and water supply development.

    Further, Denver Water has shown commitment towards a watershed approach to protecting its sourcewater through its investments in the post-fire restoration of the watershed above Cheeseman Resevoir, a major water source for Denver.

    Mayor Hickenlooper’s effort to ensure the sustainability of Denver, called GreenPrint Denver, also promotes water conservation and efficiency.

    EPA believes that better management practices, efficient water use, full-cost pricing of water and a watershed approach to protection – the four pillars of sustainable infrastructure -- will help utilities to operate more sustainability now and in the long-term.