Arizona American Water president picked for Governor's Blue Ribbon Water Panel

Jan. 8, 2010
PHOENIX, AZ, Jan. 8, 2010 -- Arizona American Water president Paul Townsley has been appointed to the state's 30-member Blue Ribbon Panel on Water Sustainability that will convene for the first time this Friday...

• Water utility to bring expertise in industrial water conservation and technology

PHOENIX, AZ, Jan. 8, 2010 -- Arizona American Water president Paul Townsley has been appointed to the state's 30-member Blue Ribbon Panel on Water Sustainability that will convene for the first time this Friday.

The panel, formed under Gov. Jan Brewer, is tasked with finding ways to enhance regional water supplies and significantly increase conservation throughout the state.

Invited to the group are some of Arizona's most prominent and knowledgeable individuals in water and sustainability with a range of expertise, including members from local, state, federal and tribal governments, environmental groups and other non- government organizations, including representatives from the private utility sector.

The panel's goals include coming up with ways to increase the state's reclaimed and recycled water use by 40 percent by 2030 as well as recovering the energy needed to produce and treat water by a "significant percentage."

"This panel is comprised of some the most experienced and prominent people in the field and it is an honor to be included with them on this very important project," Townsley said. "Arizona American Water has been a pioneer in water reuse and technology and I believe we have a lot to offer to the discussion."

Arizona American Water, which operates several water districts throughout the state and serves a population of more than 300,000 customers, was selected for representation on the panel as an industry leader in water treatment and because of its significant investment in water reuse technology.

The company has recently spent more than $100 million in the construction of state-of-the-art treatment plants in Arizona that employ groundbreaking water-saving technology.

This includes the company's Anthem water campus, which treats millions of gallons of water per day and reuses 100 percent of its treated wastewater for irrigation within Anthem. This, together with the company's new $60-million White Tanks Regional Water Treatment Facility located in its Agua Fria district, saves more than 20 billion gallons of water each year.

In addition to its large water operations, Arizona American Water has also implemented water conservation projects at its smaller, existing facilities. This includes a project at the company's Northwest Valley facility, which was named "Project of the Year" in 2009 at the annual Arizona Reuse Conference for reducing potable water use and operating costs by more than 50 percent at the facility.

"We are seriously committed to this ambitious endeavor and are confident we will forge a path to a long-term and sustainable solution," Townsley said. "It's good to see the Governor and fellow industry leaders rally around what has been our operating premise for years, which is that merely enhancing water supplies is not enough to meet Arizona's growing demand. It must go hand-in-hand with a comprehensive conservation and reuse plan that applies to all forms of water use within the state."

Friday's meeting will serve to brief panel members on the scope and purpose of the board as well as define goals and a process by which to meet them.

The panel is scheduled to issue an initial report in June 2010 with a final version due in November 2010.

About Arizona American Water
Arizona American Water, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Water, is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to more than 300,000 people.

About American Water
Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest investor-owned U.S. water and wastewater utility company. With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs more than 7,000 dedicated professionals who provide drinking water, wastewater and other related services to approximately 15 million people in 32 states and Ontario, Canada. More information can be found by visiting