Delivering Better-Tasting Water to Residents on Boston’s North Shore

Posted Wednesday, May 06, 2015 | Comments (0)

Eliminating Manganese in a Raw-Water Reservoir

The Challenge

Wenham Lake, a 220-acre reservoir operated by the Salem/Beverly Water Supply Board, provides drinking water to several hundred thousand residents on Boston’s North Shore. Complaints of “funny-tasting,” discolored water were rising along with treatment costs. The culprit: high levels of manganese, a problem that plagues many water-supply reservoirs. When the reservoir runs out of oxygen at the bottom, chemical reactions release manganese and iron from the sediments into the water. Because these compounds are difficult and expensive to remove in the water plant, the result is often yellow/rust-colored, bad-tasting, drinking water.


The Solution

Resolving iron and manganese problems requires oxygenation. We installed an Bottom Aeration System, and treated 160 acres of the reservoir around their intake structure. We were the only company to offer a performance guarantee on manganese reduction—committing to a standard of less than .05 mg/l (.05 parts per million) average manganese level in the raw water.

The Results

Raw-water manganese levels dropped 45% in 60 days after system “turn-on” in the fall of 2014. By early May 2015, manganese levels had dropped 94% to .02 mg/l—well under our guaranteed target.

The Feedback

The Salem/Beverly Water Supply Board is thrilled with the progress and will be tracking ROI and savings in the plant over the coming months. We’re happy to be delivering better water to the North Shore, especially since it’ll make the lobster rolls taste even better on our next visit!


What’s Your Water-Body Challenge?

Are you a water utility struggling with taste and odor issues due to high manganese and iron concentrations in your reservoir system? We can solve the problem at a fraction of the cost of treating it out in the water plant—and at a significantly lower capital investment than competing technologies.

Contact us at (269) 383-3400 or for expert guidance on selecting the right technology to restore your water body.