Ribbon Cutting at New Water Filtration Plant in Rockport 

It’s a first of a kind in our state, and residents along the Mid-Coast are drinking up the rewards.Aqua Maine cut the ribbon Monday, on its new water filtration plant in Rockport.The $7.2 million dollar project went on-line last month.Mirror Lake has been the primary source of water for the area since the late 1800’s and like many other city plants in Maine, the H20 was treated but not filtered.But new EPA regulations under the Safe Drinking Water Act, prompted Aqua Maine to invest in the new system.It uses large scale membranes to filter, a new type of technology in Maine.”The water is actually strained under pressure across a very sophisticated membrane,” explains Rick Knowlton, Vice-President of Operations for Aqua Maine. “That membrane allows the water to pass through it, but it holds contaminants.””The drinking water was safe before, I want to make that clear,” says Curt Spaulding, EPA Regional Administrator. “But what this does is it helps with the byproducts of dis-infection. They could have done a couple of things, but they decided to put the filtration in, and it make the water really clean.”Stimulus dollars helped fund the new system.Aqua Maine says its 7,700 customers will see a rate increase of about 24% to help pay for the project.