Superintendent John Meadows shows sixth graders from Radney Elementary how filters provide clean drinking water at the Adams Water Treatment plant Friday. | Laura Pemberton

Archived Story

Students tour treatment plant

Published 12:00pm Saturday, January 26, 2013

Students from Radney Elementary’s gifted program got the opportunity to see where clean water comes from with a guided tour of Adams Water Treatment plant Friday.

“This is another good connection,” said teacher Laurie Barrett. “It gives them a chance to learn in another setting. We try to do a lot of environmental things and get them out of the classroom.”

Superintendent John Meadows showed students how water is taken from Lake Martin, cleaned and sent to homes in Alexander City.

Students learned the system is capable of pumping 24 million gallons of water a day from Lake Martin, but since the reduction of Russell Corporation now averages 10 million gallons per day.

Meadows, who has worked at the plant since its beginnings in 1981, explained how the system of steps involving tanks and filters works to clean the water.

Students also learned about pH levels and ions inside the treatment facility’s lab as Charlie Edmondson, a grade IV operator, demonstrated how chemicals are added and measured.

Students learned the correct levels of chemicals like chlorine and fluoride in drinking water and why these chemicals are added.

“Fluoride is added because it is good for teeth,” Meadows said. “We used to put one part per million into drinking water, but this year ADEM changed that requirement to 0.7 parts per million.”

Lake Watch President Dick Bronson frequently educates students about water, and he accompanied students on the field trip Friday.

“This is part of the commitment Lake Watch made to Radney Elementary,” Bronson said. “We saw a need we could help fill. This is our third year doing it, and we’ll continue to do it. Environmental education is part of the mission of Lake Watch.”