The City of Salem is actively preparing for another algae season in the North Santiam Watershed. Recent wildfires and warmer than normal temperatures this spring may impact the algae blooms in the Detroit Reservoir and North Santiam River and increase the level of cyanotoxins in our lakes and streams earlier than usual. Public Work's staff is closely monitoring cyanotoxin levels and ready to respond with additional treatment if needed. To ensure a safe and resilient drinking water system, the City of Salem has invested in a new Ozone Treatment Facility at Geren Island.
Ozone is one of the strongest disinfectants used to treat drinking water. It produces no taste or odor and no ozone remains in the water after treatment. Construction of the new facility is nearly complete and will be a valuable tool in treating the City's drinking water beginning late Spring. A virtual tour of the system and how it works is now available on the City of Salem website.
The City of Salem is also increasing water storage capacity with the construction improvements to the Woodmansee Park Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) System. This system stores drinking water in a natural underground aquifer. Construction has begun in the southeast Salem park and is expected to be completed by 2022.
Salem's water remains safe to drink and the City will continue to provide updates to the community as the 2021 algae season moves forward. Residents are encouraged to visit the City of Salem's website at www.cityofsalem.net/drinking-water to see current watershed conditions and updated water quality test data.
Community members who have questions can contact the City of Salem at
[email protected] or 503-588-6311.