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Cleveland Utilities comments on tap water taste/odor concerns

Cleveland Utilities (CU) released a statement yesterday addressing the cause for the water taste and odor change in Cleveland’s drinking water, which has been an ongoing issue for residents since late April.


A large majority of CU’s drinking water supply comes from the Hiwassee River, just upstream of Charleston. According to CU, recent tests have indicated the source of the taste and odor issue is primarily naturally occurring algae-derived compounds often found in surface water supplies across the United States. The compounds have what is described as an “earthy/musty” taste and odor, but are not harmful.  


Cleveland Utilities statement read in part “Since these taste and odor issues have started, CU has and continues to meet all primary drinking water standards of the treated water. CU, along with its partners at the Tennessee Valley Authority and Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation continue to collect and analyze data to gain more information on the cause of the taste and odor issue as well as the quickest way to remedy it. While we continue analyzing the source water, CU has already proactively implemented an additional treatment measure to help minimize the taste and odor changes some customers are experiencing.“