About the Program
Newark's Water Supply
The City of Newark supplies water to a population of approximately 280,000 within the City, the largest city in the state of New Jersey. Located in the center of New Jersey’s Gateway Region, the City has been a major regional commerce and transportation hub since the 19th century. The City’s population is supplied potable water through a large, complex system owned and operated by the City. The system provides approximately 80 million gallons per day (mgd) of water to a population of over 300,000 customers within the City and its surrounding communities including several commercial and wholesale customers.
The system is managed by the City of Newark’s Department of Water and Sewer Utilities (Department) who is responsible for managing a very precious water resource and providing customers with a reliable and safe supply of potable water. To accomplish this, the Department is tasked with meeting or exceeding current Federal and State regulations and consumer expectations.
Lead Service Lines
It is estimated that, of the approximate 36,000 residential water service accounts in the City’s distribution system, there are approximately 15,000 full or partial lead service lines in the system. The City is somewhat unique in that the entire portion of each service line is owned by the customer/property owner. The City recently exceeded the federal “Action Level” for lead at the 90th percentile of a sample pool of 233 customers. On July 11, 2017, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) sent a letter to the City that outlined a series of actions in response to the Lead Action Level exceedance. The letter required the City to replace, or offer to replace, a minimum of 7% of their residential lead service lines (LSLs) within one year of the exceedance.
In response to NJDEP, the City is seeking both immediate and long-term measures to minimize lead levels throughout the system. Specifically, the City, a) has developed a program to offer to replace all known lead service lines in the City; and b) is looking to optimize corrosion control treatment. This project focuses on the replacement of the LSLs for residential customers.
Newark's Lead Service Line Replacement Program
The Lead Service Line Replacement Program is an aggressive, multi-year program, commencing in the year 2018 to offer to replace all remaining known Lead Service Lines (LSLs) in the City within a period of eight (8) years. The first phase of this program will replace approximately 1,500 LSLs spread throughout the City’s water distribution system during the first year of the program’s implementation. The City is committed to protecting public health and continuing to provide safe drinking water to all of its customers, and this aggressive Lead Service Line Replacement Program demonstrates that commitment.