Water Quality Report
A Refreshing Tomorrow
Our Water Quality Report for 2019
Newton County’s Cornish Creek WTP has won the State of Georgia’s Best of the Best Water Taste Test Award (2019)
The Newton County Water & Sewerage Authority was created by the Georgia Legislature in 1970 to distribute clean, safe drinking water throughout the unincorporated areas of Newton County. We purchase treated water for drinking and potable uses from the Newton County Board of Commissioners, who own and operate Lake Varner, an 820-acre drinking water and recreational reservoir containing approximately 4 Billion Gallons. The Alcovy River, with its headwaters in Gwinnett County, is the source water for Newton County. Raw water is diverted from the river and pumped to Lake Varner and one smaller reservoir. Located on the Lake Varner Reservoir site, the award-winning Cornish Creek Water Treatment Plant filters and disinfects up to 25 Million Gallons per Day, transforming the source water into clean, safe drinking water for nearly 110,000 citizens in Newton County.
As a customer of the NCWSA system, one should feel confident that Newton County is drought-ready, having the ability to stretch our water supply at Lake Varner from 6 to 8 months under record drought conditions.
Contaminants and potential pollution sources tributary to the Alcovy River and the Reservoirs are identified in a Source Water Assessment Plan (SWAP) completed in May 2000. From the SWAP, we find that the overall susceptibility of the source water was rated medium. The greatest potential threat to our source water quality is agricultural waste ponds, secondary paved roads, and sediment-laden runoff. Recommendations for Alcovy watershed protection contained in the Assessment help to ensure that our customers will be provided with the best quality water in the future. The Source Water Assessment will be updated in 2020.
About Our Drinking Water
Newton County’s Cornish Creek WTP has won the State of Georgia’s Best Operated Water Treatment Facility for 2019.
In Georgia, sources of drinking water (both tap and bottled water) include rivers, lakes, streams, ponds, reservoirs, springs, and wells. As raw water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally occurring minerals and, in some cases, radioactive material. and can pick up substances resulting from the presence of animals or from human activity. Contaminants that may be present in source water include:
- Microbial contaminants, bacteria, viruses, including Cryptosporidium, which may pass through or leave wastewater treatment plants, septic systems, agricultural livestock operations, and wildlife areas,
- Inorganic contaminants, such as salts and metals which can be naturally occurring or result from urban storm water runoff, industrial or domestic wastewater discharges, oil and gas production, mining, and farming,
- Pesticides and herbicides, which may come from a variety of sources such as agriculture, urban storm water runoff, and residential uses,
- Organic chemical contaminants, including synthetic and volatile organic chemicals, which are by-products of industrial processes and petroleum production, and come from gas stations, urban storm water runoff, and septic systems, and,
- Radioactive contaminants, which can be naturally occurring, or be the result of oil and gas production and mining activities.
To ensure that tap water is safe to drink, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) prescribes regulations which limit the number and type of contaminants present in treated water provided by U.S. water systems. Federal Food and Drug Administration Agency regulations establish limits for contaminants in bottled water which must provide the same protections for consumers.
Drinking water, including bottled water, may reasonably be expected to contain low levels of some contaminants. The presence of contaminants does not necessarily indicate that the water poses a health risk.
Certain individuals may be more vulnerable to contaminants in drinking water than the general population. Elderly persons and infants are more vulnerable along with immuno-compromised persons, those undergoing chemotherapy, organ transplant recipients, those with HIV / AIDS, or other immune system disorders can be particularly at risk for infections. At-risk persons should seek advice from their health care providers about drinking water. The EPA and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) maintain guidelines on the appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection by microbial contaminants. More information is available from Safe Drinking Water Hotline at (800) 426-4791.
11325 Brown Bridge Road
Covington, GA 30016
770.787.1375 • 770.786.4536