The Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority (CCMUA) is one of five utilities nationwide featured in the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) climate readiness video series. The CCMUA was chosen by the U.S. EPA because of their efforts to install green energy and green infrastructure projects in order to reduce the nation’s vulnerability to climate change.
“As President Obama is calling for our nation to take action now to combat climate change, we are proud that the CCMUA is being recognized by the U.S. EPA for their innovative practices and stewardship of the environment,” said Freeholder Jeffrey Nash, liaison to the CCMUA. “The work they do on behalf of the residents of this county is something in which we can all be proud.”
The CCMUA was one of over 20 communities across the country to complete a climate risk assessment using USEPA’s Climate Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT). The USEPA developed CREAT to assist utilities in identifying potential climate change threats and assessing their individual risks. The software tool provides users with access to the most recent national assessment of climate change impacts for use in considering how these changes will impact utility operations and missions.
The U.S. EPA selected the CCUMA out of thousands of utilities across the nation that are experiencing the impacts of climate change and extreme weather events. The CCMUA has already taken action to reduce their vulnerability and increase their resilience to a changing climate.
“Over the last 10 years the Freeholder Board has progressively moved forward with initiating and implementing tools to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce waste,” Nash said. “This is another excellent example of the agency thinking globally and acting locally to improve the quality of life for our residents.”
The CCMUA has not only optimized water quality and reduced odors at their facility, but has done so while stabilizing rates. On the energy front, the CCMUA has utilized solar power, and is the recipient of a PSE&G grant to extract heat from sewage. In Camden City, the Waterfront South Rain Gardens inhibit storm water from entering the overburdened sewer system while reducing flooding, sewer backups and sewage overflows during major rain events.
In addition, the CCMUA just completed a $50 million expansion project that allowed it construct two new pumping stations and 25 miles of new sewer lines through the six municipalities, allowing the issuance of new sewer permits for the first time in several years. A major component of the project is the elimination of three antiquated wastewater treatment plants. The expansion discontinued the discharge of 2.4 million gallons of less than optimally treated wastewater into the groundwaters of the Pinelands National Reserve, the Mullica River and the Great Egg Harbor River each day.
The video can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/_w9Omq3ZMQg