Water Projects on the Navajo Nation

Brown & Caldwell regional water planning, water systems, and improvement projects

Water Projects on the Navajo Nation

For the past 6 years, ETD, Inc. has working with Brown & Caldwell on regional water planning projects and water systems improvement projects across the Navajo Nation. Brown & Caldwell coordinates its efforts with Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA), Indian Health Service (IHS), and the Navajo Water Management Branch (NWMB).  The regional plans were paid for by the Navajo Nation.   The water systems improvement projects required coordination with several lead federal agencies:  BIA who approved the rights-of-way and USDA or EPA who approved funding.  Below is a list of projects we worked on with Brown & Caldwell. 

Regional Water Planning Projects on Navajo                  

In the past, NWMB, NTUA, and IHS  who have responsibilities for water development on the Navajo Nation have never really coordinated their efforts for long-range, large water infrastructure projects.   Acknowledging that a more coordinated effort was needed to meet address deficiencies in water systems across Navajo, a regional water planning approach was initiated by the NWMB with funding from the Navajo Nation Council.  ETD's role was to develop information that would lead to water demands projects for 40 years into the future.  We summarized and mapped current and future land uses, estimated population projections, and described the socioeconomic conditions for over 20 Navajo Chapters (About One-fifth of the Navajo Nation).  The Navajo Nation Council recently allocated another $100 + million for water infrastructure projects across Navajo.  Some of these projects are based on the planning efforts by Brown and Caldwell and ETD.

Environmental Assessment:  Ganado and Dilkon/Lower Greasewood Water Systems Improvement Project

Systems improvements included piping installation, water tank refurbishing, construction of a new well, and connection of the Ganado and Lower Greasewood water systems. The proposed action will result in improved water quality, and optimal use of existing facilities, improved water conveyance, and  increased water supply.

Environmental Assessment:  Oljato Water Supply Improvement Project

Oljato Chapter is located near the state border between Arizona and Utah.  As Oljato has a large visitor population and increasing population of the local residents, there is a higher demand for water than what is currently feasible.  A test well ("OW-8") will be retro-fitted and put into service and the Oljato water system will be connected to the larger Monument Valley Southwest water system.  Along with a new booster pump, there will be an increase in maximum capacity, conveyance capacity, and reliability and sustainability.

Environmental Assessment:  Jeddito Goldwater Waterline Loop Project

Jeddito Chapter is a unique Navajo Chapter in that it is divided into two "islands" of land. One island is surrounded by Hopi territory while the other portion borders the Hopi and Navajo Reservations.  IHS identified 95 homes in need of fresh water and sewer utilities. The Jeddito Goldwater Waterline Loop project aims to address these issues. It will extend for 28 miles. 

Environmental Assessment:  Aneth & Montezuma Creek Arsenic Water Treatment Buildings

An Administrative Compliance Order (ACO) from the Navajo Nation Environmental Protection Agency indicated two wells that service the Aneth Community Water System were found to have an annual running average of 15.6 μg/L for arsenic while one well, serving the Montezuma Creek Community Water System, has an annual running average of 25.6 μg/L for arsenic. To put this into perspective, the Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for arsenic is 10 μg/L (parts per billion). The water will be treated using a process called Iron Removal/Coagulation/Filtration. It uses iron oxides to bind with arsenic, which is then filtered out and left to dry in an evaporation pond. The precipitate is a solid iron-arsenic compound that will be periodically removed by NTUA and taken to a certified solid waste landfill.

 

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