Embracing change yields
major savings for WaterOne
A willingness to change traditional thinking and methods of operation has resulted in annual energy cost savings of more than a million dollars a year – around 20 percent of the total annual energy bill – for Kansas water utility WaterOne.
Serving 400,000 people in Johnson County, near Kansas City, WaterOne draws raw water from the Kansas and Missouri Rivers and distributes a peak supply of 200 million gallons a day of treated water via more than 2,500 miles of piping spanning 270 square miles.
Chuck Weber, WaterOne’s Superintendent of Operations, says that when Derceto approached him with a proposal on how Derceto’s Aquadapt could achieve significant operational efficiencies and deliver energy savings, a lower overall carbon footprint – as well as improving water quality – he was a little skeptical.
“I was taught one of the most important things in operating a water treatment plant is to keep the flow constant. But the Aquadapt solution delivers energy savings and other benefits by occasionally changing the flow. Also, in our industry energy saving has not been given a high priority. We tend to see the energy costs involved in maintaining a constant flow through the system as just a cost of business,” Chuck Weber says.
“But times are changing. Achieving the lowest possible carbon footprint, and delivering water to our customers in the most sustainable way possible is important. The possibility of doing that, while at the same time lowering our overall operating overhead, could not be ignored – even if it required challenging our traditional methods of operation.”
The SWAN Forum UK 2012 was held at the Think Tank in Birmingham on 22nd November.
Q: Does Aquadapt software replace my operators?
A: Definitely not! Aquadapt software is like an Auto Pilot which carries out the millions of calculations required to achieve a good mass balance in your supply system for lowest overall cost. This frees up the operators to concentrate on the daily tasks such as shut-down scheduling, maintenance planning, plant load balancing, water quality testing and any one of the thousand and one unique things that pop up each and every day in a complex real world system.