Increasing energy efficiency at municipal water utilities is one of the most effective ways to reduce costs and improve environmental performance. EPA and the Missouri University of Science and Technology collaborated on a Regional Applied Research Effort project to assist eight communities participating in the Missouri Water Utilities Partnership to increase energy efficiency at their wastewater facilities. The objective of the project was to help these communities, and others like them, to reduce utility costs and pollution while improving reliability and performance. Researchers assisted the communities in assessing their energy efficiency and effectiveness, provided recommendations regarding wastewater treatment and use, and presented the results of their changes to a broader community audience through outreach and the development of written cases studies.
As a result of this research, many of the communities that participated in this project gained more than a 20% reduction in energy use. The case studies are helping other communities analyze their own situation by providing ideas for energy efficiency and effectiveness. Finally, the data collected from this effort are informing the research community on the condition and specifications of these utilities to better aid technological development needed for wastewater treatment.