Stiff utility costs spur Scottsdale Hoover Dam power play

Water delivered throughout the bounds of the city of Scottsdale will now be delivered in part from renewable energy made possible through the Hoover Dam. (File photo)

The city of Scottsdale is reporting its water department will begin receiving energy from the Hoover Dam, which officials say is a significant step in the utility’s commitment to environmental and financial stewardship.
Water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon.

City officials say every day the Scottsdale Water Department treats and delivers an average of 68 million gallons of drinking water, collects and treats about 20 million gallons of sewage, and delivers up to another 20 million gallons of recycled water.

A view of the Hoover Dam, which was built between 1933 and 1947. (Submitted photo)

Moving and treating that much water requires an extraordinary amount of energy, city officials contend, pointing out the city’s water department uses more electricity annually than all other city departments combined.

The utility requires an average of almost 39,000 kW and over 143,000,000 kWh of electrical power annually to continuously provide high quality, reliable water and sewer service to its customers, according to the Sept. 29 posting at scottsdaleaz.gov.

City officials say this power has historically been provided through a combination of both Arizona Public Service and Salt River Project, with an annual fiscal impact of more than $16 million or about 18 percent of the utility’s operating budget.

Officials say the city submitted an application in 2014 seeking an allocation of low-cost, renewable hydropower generated from Hoover Dam to meet a portion of its required annual energy needs. Scottsdale Water was successful in receiving the second largest municipal allocation of Hoover Power in Arizona, according to the website posting.

The 50-year contract awarded Scottsdale Water an allocation of 2,371 kW and 5,176,974 kWh of Hoover Power. This allocation represents approximately 3.7 percent of Scottsdale Water’s total annual energy use, and approximately 12.7 percent of the annual energy use at the Scottsdale Water Campus facility.

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