The water is drawn from aquifers located 20 to 100 metres below the Danish subsoil and is clean that is so clean that it is not necessary to add chlorine to purify it. Generally, the water just need to be aerated and filtrated before it is piped out to the consumers.
HOFOR (Greater Copenhagen Utility) produces and supplies water to one million people in the greater Copenhagen area, closely monitoring the quality of the ground water and protecting it against contamination in various ways.
Protecting our ground water against contamination
As part of the effort to protect the ground water, HOFOR plants trees in the areas where we extract ground water, in partnership with Danish Nature Agency. We also enter into agreement with local farmers who undertake to cultivate their fields in an environmentally friendly manner. This helps us prevent the use of fertilizers that might otherwise leach into the soil and contaminate the ground water.
Protecting the ground water benefits both the environment and the Danish drinking water, which is a precious and limited resource. By protecting the ground water, we ensure that we will be able to use our extractions areas for many years to come.
Copenhagen’s tap water is among the most heavily controlled in Denmark. HOFOR uses a comprehensive control programme that ensures consistently the quality. When the water is aerated and filtered at the waterworks, we comply with the same safety regulations as those applied to food processing (the international ISO 22000 standards). The water is tested daily for bacterial contamination by our expert staff; at the waterworks, within the pipe network and on its way out to the consumers.
We also test the water for other substances such as fertilizers and chlorine-based solutions to make sure that it meets the quality requirements for drinking water at all times.
900 times better than bottled water
The CO2 footprint created when we pipe the water into the consumers’ taps is very small. In fact, tap water is 900 times more environmental friendly that bottled water, which is transported by road and involves resources-intensive operations such as the manufacture and cleaning of plastic bottles.
For each litre of water that leaves a Copenhagen tap, only 0.0002 kg of CO2 is emitted. This figure takes into account everything from building waterworks to extraction, treatment, and transport through the water pipe network. However, if you just grab a litre of bottled water from the supermarket, you will have a whole 0-18 kg of CO2 emissions on your conscience.