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Leaks Can Run, but They Can’t Hide

Are you ready to chase down leaks? Household leaks can waste nearly 1 trillion gallons of water annually nationwide, so each year we hunt down the drips during Fix a Leak Week. Mark your calendars for EPA’s annual Fix a Leak Week, March 18 through 24, 2024—but remember that you can find and fix leaks inside and outside your home to save valuable water and money all year long.

The average household’s leaks can account for nearly 10,000 gallons of water wasted every year and ten percent of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day. Common types of leaks found in the home are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves. These types of leaks are often easy to fix, requiring only a few tools and hardware that can pay for themselves in water savings. Fixing easily corrected household water leaks can save homeowners about 10 percent on their water bills.

What is Drinking Water Week?

For more than 40 years the American Water Works Association and its members have used Drinking Water Week as a unique opportunity for both water professionals and the communities they serve to recognize the vital role water plays in our daily lives.

Drinking Water Week is May 5-11, 2024

Upcoming Events:

    • May 8th (Wednesday)  –
      • 11:00am – 1:00pm – R.T. Jones Library – 116 Brown Industrial Pkwy Canton –
        An informational program on what the Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) is and the valuable information it contains.
      • 1:00pm – 3:00pm – Barrel House Coffee at 275 Gilmer Ferry Rd, Ste 5, Ball Ground –
        Get all the details on our Annual Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) and how we provide high quality drinking water to Cherokee County residents.
    • May 7th (Tuesday), May 8th (Wednesday), and May 9th (Thursday) –
      • 10:00am or 2:00pm – Etowah Water Treatment Plant Tours –
        Tours will last 1 – 1 1/2 hours.  You must register by Monday, May 6, 2024 to attend a tour.  There is a 25 person maximum per group so be sure to register early to secure your spot!  Contact Lori Forrester to register.
    • Now through May 10, 2024 –
      • Coloring Contest –
        • Cherokee County students in grades K – 3rd are eligible for the contest.  One or more lucky winners will be selected to win a $10 Ice Cream Gift Card!  All coloring sheet entries must be received by May 10, 2024.  Coloring sheets can be submitted at the CCWSA Main Office – 140 W. Main St. in Canton.  If you have a large number of entries, a pickup can be arranged by contacting Lori Forrester.  The student’s name, grade and contact information (or teacher), must be included on the back of the coloring sheet.  Click here to download the 2024 Drinking Water Week Coloring Sheet.  Good luck to all Cherokee County Students!!

CCWSA celebrates Drinking Water Week!

Education Updates

Imagine A Day Without Water

Congratulations to E.T. Booth MS student Mikaela Charles for winning the Imagine a Day Without Water story contest! The story was unique, full of emotion and adventure that kept the reader engaged all the way through to the end.

Edu Up - Mikaela Charles 120

Rivers Alive Cleanups

We had a great Rivers Alive cleanup season with the Allatoona Lake, Ball Ground Creek, Etowah River and Little River Cleanup! Help us continue to keep our community clean by participating in the Keep Cherokee Beautiful and Lake Allatoona Warriors cleanups throughout the year.

Edu Up - Group 1237

Storm Drain Making

We marked 80 storm drains in Edgewater thanks to our incredible volunteers. Thank you for another great event partnering with City of Holly Spring stormwater.

Edu Up - Stormdrain HS 069

Fish ID Class

Learning about fish classification in an outdoor classroom is the best! Thank you to our GA AAS group Ball Ground Streamers for continuing to learn more.

Edu Up - Fish ID Class 152
Edu Up - Christmas Tree HDR1

Festival of Trees

As part of “Be the Source” we participated in the Festival of Trees with Sequoyah Regional Library. See out “Be the Source” and Water Conservation tree.

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Georgia Adopt-a-Stream

Congratulations to out Adopt-A-Stream group of the year – Lake Sovereign G-2875. They received this honor for the precise and consistent visual, chemical and bacterial monitoring throughout 2021. Check out their data set.

Do you have a body of water that is near and dear to your heart? Maybe a creek in your back yard or a favorite spot to find tranquility from the hustle of the 9-5. If you fall into this category and you would like to take a more active role in the protection of this waterbody, Adopt-A-Stream may be for you.

In water quality testing, there is not a silver bullet kind of test that is all encompassing of water quality. Rather, we rely on a series of test that gives us a look in to the health of a body of water over time. These are “snapshots”, if you will, of what is going on at that particular moment. Over time, we start to see trends develop and when we see an abnormality, it lets us know something is wrong.

Adopt-A-Stream (AAS) has three main types of tests that give us excellent data on the health of the stream and when combined, give us a more comprehensive view of the waterbody.

Chemical Monitoring:
This type of monitoring looks at chemical parameters such as dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity, and temperature to give us a look at the stream’s health on a monthly basis. Certain parameters fluctuate from season to season and it is important to have the data to establish trends. In order for aquatic life to survive, there are certain requirements for basic necessities to be met. Some of these necessities are the same for us. For instance, they all have to have oxygen to survive. Another extremely important parameter is pH. Most aquatic life requires between 6 – 8.5 and even minor changes can be harmful. More advanced testing is also available which includes alkalinity, nitrate, ammonia, and phosphate, if you are interested.

Bacteria Monitoring:
There are millions of varieties of bacteria that exist in nature and they all have a variety of sources and important roles to play in the natural world. The type of bacteria we look at in particular is E. Coli. This type is referred to as an indicator organism because it is a member of bacteria that are only found in the intestines of warm blooded animals. The level of this bacteria will let us know whether we will get sick or not if we or a four legged friend drinks from this body of water. This monitoring is also a monthly test.

Macroinvertebrate Monitoring:
This type of monitoring looks at the diversity and abundance of a macro-invertebrate (organism that lives in the water that can be easily viewed with the naked eye). Since these organisms are not very mobile, they are both easy to catch and provide a good health indicator of the water quality. Each organism has a different level of pollution tolerance before they perish, so a more diverse population of organisms are better than finding an abundance of one species. Monitoring for macro’s is only recommended quarterly since these organisms do not change much from month to month and we don’t want to disturb their ecosystem on a frequent basis.

Any surface water is a constantly moving and changing force of nature and as such there is no presumed safety in it’s consumption. Hopefully, should this program sound worthwhile to you, you can help protect this important natural resource for the generations that come after us.

We offer trainings on the AAS testing methods based on requests; though most of our availability will be Monday- Friday 8-5. Once you become a certified volunteer, we offer equipment loans for a 7-day check out. Please feel free to reach out and ask any questions you may have.

Educational Programs/Resources

Learn about the free environmental education programs and online resources offered to classroom teachers, homeschool groups, and community groups.

CCWSA provides a wide array of programs for Kindergarten through 12th grade. Each activity is matched up with the Georgia Science Standards for each grade. However, all activities can be adjusted to teach younger or older children. In addition, some activities such as the Enviroscape can be used to teach college students and adult groups.

The activities are separated by grade level for the ease of finding what fits best for your needs.

Interested in having us come in to do a program? Contact us. Scheduling early is recommended.

CCWSA is proud to be a Partner in Education with Creekland Middle School.
The Partners in Education program is administered by Cherokee county Chamber of Commerce. The program is about fostering partnerships among business organizations, schools and communities in Cherokee County.


Science Basic: Hitting the Mark

Best for 4th grade and up.  The students will distinguish between accuracy and precision, investigate the relationship of accuracy and precision as it relates to water quality data collection, write clear procedures, and recognize the limitations of those procedures. Students work in small groups to create a structure and/or method to make the clay ball hit the target. Then they write the procedure out step by step. The groups then rotate and have to use the other group’s procedure to get the same results. This is a fun hands-on interactive way to teach accuracy and precision!

Informational Articles and Videos

CCWSA provides information through articles and videos about important topics that impact your everyday life.
For more information on these topics and more check out the Clean Water Campaign.

Stormwater Issues

Articles: Pet Waste and Stormwater | Stormwater (leaves in stormdrain), | Harmful Algal Blooms (HAB’s) | Fats, Oils and Grease  (FOG)
Who To Call when you observe a problem | What is benthic macroinvertebrate?

Videos: Fats, Oils and Grease

Informational Posters: Algal Blooms | Pet Waste | Fats, Oils and Grease | Stormwater vs. Wastewater | Did you know? Water Penny

The Rivers Alive clean-ups were a huge success this year! Cherokee County Water and Sewerage Authority (CCWSA) hosted three Rivers Alive cleanups in October that were focused on Little River, Ball Ground Creek and the Etowah River.

Man with girl tire edit

In total, we had 137 volunteers spend over 400 hours of volunteer time cleaning up approximately 300 bags of trash plus tires, car parts and more. Together we removed approximate 2 tons of trash from our beautiful Cherokee County.

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3 ladies with bags edit
group with trash bags edit

Thank you to our partners City of Woodstock, City of Holly Springs, City of Canton, City of Ball Ground, Cherokee County Stormwater, Cherokee County School District, Kristin May – Fathom Realty and the Upper Etowah River Alliance. It would not be possible without our incredible partnerships!

Imagine a Day Without Water: October 21, 2021

No water to drink, or wash your hands with. No water to shower, flush the toilet, or do laundry. Hospitals would close without water. Firefighters couldn’t put out fires and farmers couldn’t water their crops. Disease would spread.

This year, we want to help you learn more about where your water comes from and where your water goes. We’ll take a deeper dive into the impact drinking water and wastewater providers have within your community. Many Americans take water for granted every day. But what would a day be like without water? Imagine a Day Without Water 2021 will be the seventh annual day to raise awareness and educate America about the value of water.

CCWSA is sponsoring a essay contest for 6-12th grade students in Cherokee County. Entry Deadline Extended – November 12, 2021

Student information –
Our country continues to face an enormous health crisis from the coronavirus pandemic. Throughout the pandemic water and wastewater systems keeps the water flowing in homes, hospitals and essential businesses. The crisis continues to demonstrate the critical role that water and wastewater systems play in their communities, protecting public health, safeguarding the environment and making a healthy economy possible.

  • What would your day be like if you couldn’t turn on the tap and get clean drinking water?
  • What would happen if you flushed the toilet and the wastewater didn’t go anywhere?
  • What would happen if restaurants, hospitals, firefighters, farms or hundreds of industries that depend on water ran out of water?

The essay should answer one or more of these questions. We encourage you to get creative with your essay! Grammar and spelling will be taken into account during judging. Make sure to cite all outside information. Check out Value of Water videos for inspiration.

Essay must be a minimum of 250 words and no more than 600 words.
Entries must include Student’s Name, Grade, School and Parent Contact information.
Email Entries To Us

Drinking Water Week

Thank you to everyone that attended the Drinking Water Week events and students that participated in the coloring contest. Coloring contest winners announced.

Thank you for everyone that came out to see us at our Drinking Water Week community events in Hickory Flat, Waleska and Ballground. In total, we had the pleasure to interact with more than 60 community members. The coloring contest was a great success with close to 1000 entries!

Meet the Winners!

Kindergarden: Avery Clanton | Johnston ES

1st grade: Mauvick Carlson | Arnold Mill ES

2nd grade: Rylee Morris | Clayton ES

3rd grade and Grand Prize: Riley Turner | RM Moore ES

2nd grade Honorable Mention: Felicia Untung | Johnston ES

3rd grade Honorable Mention: Grace Hanner | Ballground – Homeschool

Science & Engineering Fair

Cherokee County Water and Sewerage Authority (CCWSA) recognized Cherokee County students in the 2021 NWGA Regional Science & Engineering Fair. Due to the pandemic, the judging was virtual this year. Three E.T. Booth middle school students were recognized for excellence in their projects that focused on the environmental field.

The three projects recognized for excellence were: Anna Tyner with her project “Nanotech Oil Spill Clean Up”, Adriel Ontibon with his project “Do Sound Waves Affect Plant Growth?” and Aahana Karanji with her project “Raspberry Pi Water System.”

The students accepted their awards at a small awards ceremony held at E.T. Booth MS on February 12th, 2021. They received a certificate, a goodie bag, and a gift card.

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