Residents of Delta, Montrose and Ouray will notice a difference in their drinking water this winter. Due to the constraints of construction on the DMEA/UVWUA hydroelectric power stations on the South Canal, Project 7 has lost some flexibility in supply.
This means that the quality of water will have more mineral content than normal. Although the water is still safe to drink, it will be roughly twice as "hard" as normal. Hardness is a non-scientific term that generally means how hard it is to make soap suds ... This winter it will take much more detergent than usual to wash clothes or dishes or even shampoo your hair. Scientifically that relates to 250 mg/L of hardness as CaCO3 versus a typical winter hardness of 120 mg/L. The Project 7 water supply varies seasonally, with a low of 60 mg/L in the summer (aka snowmelt, soft water) to a high of 120 mg/L in winter due to underground springs in Blue Mesa and the Gunnison Tunnel.
Everything should return to normal next spring when the UVWUA turns the Gunnison Tunnel back on for the year.blog comments powered by Disqus