Public Notice

Public Notice

Stage 1 – Water Conservation Alert

05.28.2019

Bolivia, NC – Brunswick County thanks the users of public water systems throughout the county for using water wisely over the Memorial Day weekend and asks public water system users to continue to be diligent in using water wisely. Drought conditions are expected to continue for the foreseeable weather forecast and water demands are expected to increase as vacationers visit Brunswick County beaches. Demand for water over the Memorial Day weekend exceeded 90% of the available production and distribution capacity. To ensure adequate water is available for essential needs, Brunswick County has declared a Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert effective immediately. All customers of a public water system anywhere in Brunswick County are affected by Water Conservation Alerts. Brunswick County Public Utilities provides water service in unincorporated portions of Brunswick County as well as the following communities: Boiling Spring Lakes, Bolivia, Calabash, Carolina Shores, Caswell Beach, Sandy Creek, St. James, Sunset Beach, and Varnamtown. Customers of other utilities such as Bald Head Island, Brunswick Regional – H2GO (Belville), Holden Beach, Leland, Navassa, Northwest, Oak Island, Ocean Isle Beach, Shallotte, and Southport are under the same restrictions since these utilities receive their water from Brunswick County Public Utilities.

Under a Stage 1 Water Alert, water system customers are requested to make voluntary adjustments to their water usage habits to appreciably reduce peak demands. (A peak demand of 80% of system production and distribution capacity being targeted). Irrigation demands represent the bulk of non-essential water use, so a primary way that customers may reduce water usage is to limit irrigation. A unified application of voluntary water reductions by all water system users in Brunswick County may help to avoid mandatory water restrictions in the event drought conditions do not lessen.

Specific ways to reduce water usage are as follows:
1. Defer all non-essential water use to outside the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
2. Don’t overwater your yard. One inch of water per week in the summer will keep most types of grass healthy. To determine how long you need to run your sprinkler to provide 1” of water, place straight edged cans at different distances from your sprinkler and time how long it takes to fill an average of 1” of water in each can. Water occasionally, but deeply to encourage deeper rooting that makes grass more drought/heat tolerant.
3. Install rain shut-off devices on automatic sprinkler systems.
4. Don’t water pavement and impervious surfaces.
5. Use the following recommended irrigation schedule to even out system demands:
a. Odd address numbers – Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday
b. Even address numbers – Wednesday/Friday/Sunday
c. No irrigation on Mondays
6. Limit lawn watering to that necessary for plant survival. Water lawns outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
7. Water shrubbery the minimum required. Water shrubbery outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Use drip irrigation systems in shrubbery beds and around trees to prevent water loss through evaporation.
8. Use abundant mulch around trees and shrubs to retain moisture.
9. Plant drought-tolerant grasses, trees, and plants.
10. Adjust mower height to a higher setting to retain moisture.
11. Limit the use of clothes washers and dishwashers and when used, operate fully loaded. Operate dishwashers outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
12. Limit vehicle washing to a minimum. Use commercial car washes that recycle water.
13. Use shower for bathing rather than bathtub and limit shower to no more than five (5) minutes.
14. Inspect and repair all faulty and defective parts of faucets and toilets. Pay attention to dripping sounds.
15. Do not leave faucets running while shaving, brushing teeth, rinsing or preparing food.
16. Do not wash down outside areas such as sidewalks, driveways, patios, etc.
17. Install water-saving showerheads and other water conservation devices.
18. Install water-saving devices in toilets such as early closing flappers.
19. Limit hours of water-cooled air conditioners.
20. Keep drinking water in a container in the refrigerator instead of running water from a faucet until it is cool.
21. Do not fill new (or empty) swimming or wading pools. Top off existing swimming pools from dusk until dawn.
22. Cover pool and spas when not in use to prevent evaporation.
23. Use disposable and biodegradable dishes where possible.

Please note that this Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert does not affect the use of private groundwater wells or those using highly treated reclaimed wastewater. (St. James, Winding River, Sea Trail, and Sandpiper Bay golf courses use reclaimed water. Other golf courses use wells and ponds for irrigation.) Also, this is not a water quality advisory; this is a water conservation advisory. There is no need to boil water for potable use unless you receive a Low Pressure Advisory notice for your specific area due to other conditions in the water distribution system.

Residents will be notified if any other conservation measures are needed and when conditions dictate that restrictions are no longer required. Residents who have questions should contact their water service provider directly or Brunswick County Public Utilities at 910-253-2657. Additional information can be found at

http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/files/utilities/2015/02/util_water_conservation_utilities_brochure.pdf

http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/smart-tips-for-the-home-yard.pdf

– End –

UPDATE – Stage 1 – Water Conservation Alert – UPDATE

06.06.2019

UPDATE – Stage 1 – Water Conservation Alert – UPDATE

Bolivia, NC – A Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert was instituted for all customers of any Brunswick County public water system on May 28, 2019, due to record water demand caused by excessive temperatures, lack of rain, and an increased number of visitors to Brunswick County. As a result of customers’ voluntary conservation measures combined with a break in the drought conditions, water demand has been reduced to more manageable levels. We thank you for your efforts to conserve water and to use it wisely. Although there has been some relief in the past week, hot, dry conditions are expected to return as we get into the summer season (June 21st) and the demand for water will continue to rise. Therefore, the Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert will remain in force. The conservation measures that customers have made voluntarily have had an impact in reducing water demands and we will need to continue these measures into the summer months. Please continue to use water wisely. We request that you continue to irrigate during off-peak time periods according to the schedule below. If you have a water-intensive activity (power-washing, topping off swimming pools) please do these during off-peak hours or schedule during overcast, rainy days when water demand is typically less. If there is a significant increase in water demand requiring amplified attention, we will provide notification through the media, our Web site, and by sending emergency messages via telephone. Additional information can be found at <http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/> or by calling 910-253-2657.

Under a Stage 1 Water Alert, water system customers are requested to make voluntary adjustments
as follows:

1. Defer all non-essential water use to outside the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
2. Don’t overwater your yard. One inch of water per week in the summer will keep most types of grass healthy. To determine how long you need to run your sprinkler to provide 1” of water, place straight edged cans at different distances from your sprinkler and time how long it takes to fill an average of 1” of water in each can. Water occasionally, but deeply to encourage deeper rooting that makes grass more drought/heat tolerant.
3. Install rain shut-off devices on automatic sprinkler systems.
4. Don’t water pavement and impervious surfaces.
5. Use the following recommended irrigation schedule to even out system demands:
a. Odd address numbers – Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday
b. Even address numbers – Wednesday/Friday/Sunday
c. No irrigation on Mondays
6. Limit lawn watering to that necessary for plant survival. Water lawns outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
7. Water shrubbery the minimum required. Water shrubbery outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Use drip irrigation systems in shrubbery beds and around trees to prevent water loss through evaporation.
8. Use abundant mulch around trees and shrubs to retain moisture.
9. Plant drought-tolerant grasses, trees, and plants.
10. Adjust mower height to a higher setting to retain moisture.
11. Limit the use of clothes washers and dishwashers and when used, operate fully loaded. Operate dishwashers outside of the peak demand hours of 5:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m; preferably after nightfall.
12. Limit vehicle washing to a minimum. Use commercial car washes that recycle water.
13. Use shower for bathing rather than bathtub and limit shower to no more than five (5) minutes.
14. Inspect and repair all faulty and defective parts of faucets and toilets. Pay attention to dripping sounds.
15. Do not leave faucets running while shaving, brushing teeth, rinsing or preparing food.
16. Do not wash down outside areas such as sidewalks, driveways, patios, etc.
17. Install water-saving showerheads and other water conservation devices.
18. Install water-saving devices in toilets such as early closing flappers.
19. Limit hours of water-cooled air conditioners.
20. Keep drinking water in a container in the refrigerator instead of running water from a faucet until it is cool.
21. Do not fill new (or empty) swimming or wading pools. Top off existing swimming pools from dusk until dawn.
22. Cover pool and spas when not in use to prevent evaporation.
23. Use disposable and biodegradable dishes where possible.

All customers of a public water system anywhere in Brunswick County are affected by Water Conservation Alerts. Brunswick County Public Utilities provides water service in unincorporated portions of Brunswick County as well as the following communities: Boiling Spring Lakes, Bolivia, Calabash, Carolina Shores, Caswell Beach, Sandy Creek, St. James, Sunset Beach, and Varnamtown. Customers of other utilities such as Bald Head Island, Brunswick Regional – H2GO (Belville), Holden Beach, Leland, Navassa, Northwest, Oak Island, Ocean Isle Beach, Shallotte, and Southport are under the same restrictions since these utilities receive their water from Brunswick County Public Utilities.

Please note that this Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert does not affect the use of private groundwater wells or those using highly treated reclaimed wastewater. (St. James, Winding River, Sea Trail, and Sandpiper Bay golf courses use reclaimed water. Other golf courses use wells and ponds for irrigation.) Also, this is not a water quality advisory; this is a water conservation advisory. There is no need to boil water for potable use unless you receive a Low Pressure Advisory notice for your specific area due to other conditions in the water distribution system.

Residents will be notified if any other conservation measures are needed and when conditions dictate that restrictions are no longer required. Residents who have questions should contact their water service provider directly or Brunswick County Public Utilities at 910-253-2657. Additional information can be found at <http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/>.

http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/smart-tips-for-the-home-yard.pdf

http://www.brunswickcountync.gov/files/utilities/2015/02/util_water_conservation_utilities_brochure.pdf

– End –

Update – Stage 1 – Water Conservation Alert – Reminder

06.13.2019
UPDATE – Stage 1 – Water Conservation Alert – Reminder

A Stage 1 Water Conservation Alert is still in place for all customers of any Brunswick County public water system.

Although there has been some relief, hot, dry conditions are expected to return as we get into the summer season and the demand for water will continue to rise. Recent rainfall and voluntary conservation efforts have reduced system demand; still Brunswick County has yet to reach its peak demand period associated with the July 4th holiday.

We will continue to assess the need for the Water Conservation Alert as the summer season progresses.

Thank you for your continued efforts to conserve water and to use it wisely.
– End –

US DHHS Issues Report on Health Effects of PFOS and PFOA

06.21.2018

Brunswick County is aware of a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on the health effects of PFOS and PFOA, and is working with our partners at the State to determine any additional guidance that can be gleaned from the study.
Due to the nature of the U.S. DHHS study, Brunswick County is working with toxicology and health care professionals at the N.C. DHHS and the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality to better understand the study’s results.

PFOS and PFOA are part of a group of compounds known as PFAS compounds, which also includes other emerging compounds like GenX. PFAS compounds are not regulated in drinking water, though federal and state agencies have issued non-enforceable recommendations such as health advisories or goals for some compounds.

From initial analysis, it appears that the U.S. DHHS report and an updated Draft Toxicological Profile include proposals for revised minimum risk levels for PFOS and PFOA, and new minimum risk levels for PFHxS and PFNA. These minimum risk levels are non-enforceable recommendations, similar to health advisories and goals issued by federal and state agencies for other compounds.

The report suggests a revised number of 11 parts per trillion (PPT) for PFOA; Brunswick County’s most recent test results showed 10.8 PPT on May 10 and 11.8 PPT on May 17 in finished water.

The report suggests a revised number of 7 PPT for PFOS; Brunswick County’s most recent test results showed 13 PPT on May 10 and 14.4 PPT in finished water.

The report suggests a revised number of 74 PPT for PFHxS; Brunswick County’s most recent test results showed 4.16 PPT on May 10 and 4.81 PPT on May 17 in finished water.

The report suggests a revised number of 11 PPT for PFNA; Brunswick County’s most recent test results showed 1.93 PPT on May 10 and 2.29 PPT on May 17.

“Local health departments across NC rely on the DHHS Public Health doctors and toxicologist to make recommendations concerning public health,” said David Stanley, Brunswick County Director of Health and Human Services. “The information in the report needs to be reviewed in conjunction with them to ensure the most comprehensive public health messaging to our citizens.”

Stanley added that he has been in touch with Dr. Zack Moore, State Epidemiologist and Epidemiology Section Chief for the N.C. DHHS Division of Public Health, and that N.C. DHHS is working to provide additional guidance.

On May 10, Brunswick County’s Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to approve construction of low-pressure reverse osmosis treatment at the Northwest Water Treatment Plant. During a presentation in April from the County’s engineering firm hired to research and consult on the project, the Commissioners learned about low-pressure reverse osmosis’s ability to treat a variety of emerging perflourinated chemicals, as well as its ability to remove 1,4-Dioxane. The Commissioners determined at the time that low-pressure reverse osmosis would be the most effective and economical long-term treatment method for a variety of compounds, in addition to GenX. Testing at the time, which included testing for PFOS and PFOA, determined that low-pressure reverse osmosis removed 45 PFAS compounds to as close to non-detectable limits as possible. The latest results from the low-pressure reverse osmosis pilot plant indicate that the four PFAS compounds listed in the U.S. DHHS report were reduced to non-detectable levels.

“We appreciate the Commissioners’ long-term thinking when planning for water treatment improvements for Brunswick County,” said County Manager Ann Hardy. “They anticipated that treatment standards and non-enforceable guidelines might change, and with the planned low-pressure reverse osmosis the County is well-positioned to adjust to changes as they happen.”

Bidding and construction of the low-pressure reverse osmosis is expected to begin in June of 2019.

Additional information and updates will be shared as they are available. Updates related to drinking water treatment and standards, as well as Brunswick County’s most recent water testing results, are posted online at www.brunswickcountync.gov/genx.
View the report here.

View additional information from the American Water Works Association here. www.brunswickcountync.gov/genx.
View the report here.

View additional information from the American Water Works Association here.