Drinking the Big Muddy
Published: August 12, 2015
Presentation by Tim Ganz and Tom Simmons, Missouri American Water
Original Presentation, August 12, 2015 at Big A’s Restaurant, St. Charles, MO.
Believe it or not, 43% of Missourians get their drinking water from the Missouri River. That statistic includes the City of St. Louis water plant which, although it is technically located on the Mississippi River just downstream of the Missouri (just below the Chain of Rocks), is considered Missouri River water by the Mo. Dept. of Natural Resources because it is extracted before the Missouri and Mississippi River waters begin to mix.
Despite it’s high turbidity and muddy appearance, the Missouri River is still considered a high quality water source. Of course, drawing water directly from a big river brings its own engineering and logistical challenges. How do they turn that muddy river into drinking water? What effects do agriculture and urban runoff pose to water quality?
Missouri American Water (MAW) is a private water company serving communities in St. Louis and St. Charles Counties. The main source for much of their water is the Chesterfield plant, which draws water from the Missouri River. MAW employees Tim Ganz and Tom Simmons explained some of the unique engineering and water quality challenges they face on a daily basis turning the Muddy Missouri into quality drinking water for customers.
Resources and Links
Dig deeper for more info on this topic –
- Missouri American Water homepage
- 2014 Missouri American Water Water Quality Report (St. Louis/St. Charles)
- ARTICLE – “St. Louis Water Develops Foul Taste and Smell” – article on snowmelt affecting drinking water in winter of 2014, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, March 5, 2014
- “From Source to Tap – A History of Missouri’s Public Water Supplies” by Loring Bullard, Watershed Committee of the Ozarks
The Big Muddy Speakers Series in St. Charles
is hosted by these wonderful partners:
All speakers are presenting for free and Big A’s is sharing the space for free! Thank you for sharing your knowledge with all of us!