1600 W. 12th Avenue, Denver, CO 80204
Denver Water proudly serves high-quality water and promotes its efficient use to 1.3 million people in the city of Denver and many surrounding suburbs. Established in 1918, it is Colorado's oldest and largest water utility.
Denver Water’s highest responsibility remains to serve today’s customers and a growing population in the future. The organization strives to do so while minimizing its environmental footprint and working collaboratively with neighbors to protect and enhance supplies for agriculture, riparian habitat, stream health and many other needs.
In recent years, Denver Water has embraced several cooperative and environmentally sustainable measures to meet future water demands in Colorado and the region, including:
- Conservation: Denver Water uses aggressive conservation techniques to encourage customers to use water wisely. Those include rebates, incentive programs, summer watering rules, water use enforcement and a nationally-renowned advertising campaign, among other methods, all of which have been a major success. For the last five years, customers have used less than the utility’s goal of 165 gallons per person per day. In fact, customers are using 21 percent less water than they were before Colorado’s 2002 drought – and there are 10 percent more of them.
- Colorado River Cooperative Agreement: This landmark agreement ushers in a new era of cooperation between Denver Water and Colorado’s West Slope water providers, local governments and several ski areas. The overall goal of the agreement is to protect watersheds in the Colorado River Basin while allowing Denver Water to develop future water supplies by means of cooperation, not litigation.
- From Forests to Faucets: Denver Water’s key collection and delivery infrastructure receives water from snowpack and streams on U.S. Forest Service lands. A partnership has been established between Denver Water and the Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service to improve forest and watershed conditions. Through this partnership, Denver Water is matching the U.S. Forest Service’s $16.5 million investment, totaling $33 million, toward forest treatment and watershed protection projects over a five-year period in priority watersheds critical to Denver Water’s water supply.
- Environmental Stewardship: Denver Water operates seven hydroelectric power plants at its facilities, generating more than enough energy to power all of the water system’s 22 pump stations, four treatment plants and other major facilities. Denver Water also is a leader in several programs that help protect endangered species, watersheds, rivers and streams.
- Recycled water: Denver Water operates the largest recycled water program in Colorado, treating and delivering billions of gallons of water every year for industrial and outdoor irrigation uses. Once build-out is complete, the recycled water system will free up enough drinking water to serve almost 43,000 households.
- Gross Reservoir Expansion Project: Denver Water is preparing a major construction project, one that will enhance supplies while improving the Colorado River and the environment surrounding the planned expansion. The Gross Reservoir Expansion Project, which will triple the size of Denver’s Gross Reservoir, also will improve the reliability and vulnerability of Denver Water’s system, especially during times of drought.
- Climate change: Denver Water is a leader in addressing and incorporating climate change into its planning process. Denver Water, which employs its own climate scientist, is working with other researchers to best understand how climate conditions may change in the West, as well as to promote the need for better science, modeling and uncertainty planning to meet the needs of water providers.