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Drinking Water

Pro­tect­ing and puri­fy­ing our community’s fresh drink­ing water is one of our most vital tasks. Water is one of our great­est resources and is strictly reg­u­lated through fed­eral and local guidelines.

Drink­ing water is reg­u­lated by the U.S. EPA while bot­tled water that is pur­chased is reg­u­lated by the U.S. FDA. Inter­est­ingly, the agen­cies do not fol­low the same guide­lines to reg­u­late the con­sump­tion of water. The EPA’s guide­lines for com­mu­nity water are far stricter than those used by the bot­tled water indus­try.  So set down that bot­tled water and go to the tap with a reusable bot­tle for a refill.

Reser­voirs and Drink­ing Water Supply

All of Howard County pub­lic water is pur­chased from Bal­ti­more City and the Wash­ing­ton Sub­ur­ban San­i­tary Com­mis­sion (WSSC) through a series of nego­ti­ated legal agree­ments. The Bal­ti­more City Reser­voirs pro­vide water for most of the pub­lic water sup­ply sys­tem in Howard County.  WSSC pro­vides pub­lic water to the Lau­rel area.

The major­ity of land in Howard County is pri­vately owned, so man­age­ment prac­tices at indi­vid­ual homes and busi­nesses are crit­i­cal to local water qual­ity.  Howard County works coop­er­a­tively with Mont­gomery and Prince George’s Coun­ties, WSSC, Maryland-National Cap­i­tal Park and Plan­ning Com­mis­sion, Howard Soil Con­ser­va­tion Dis­trict, and Mont­gomery Soil Con­ser­va­tion Dis­trict to pro­tect the land sur­round­ing the Patux­ent reservoir.

Howard County Bureau of Utilities

Howard County’s Bureau of Util­i­ties web­page pro­vides lots of infor­ma­tion about the water pro­grams they imple­ment such as water meters, the Lit­tle Patux­ent Water Recla­ma­tion Plant, Water Reuse, Shared Sep­tics, and more. You can also find reports such as the annual water qual­ity report and water audits.

Green Tip

Hi, I’m Howard and I’m here to provide you with green tips. Look for me throughout the site and check out my cool interactive games at the Kids Zone.