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Geosmin woes: Laurens CPW offers water quality update

Recent heavy rain and high heat is the likely culprit behind the geosmin within Lake Rabon, which is owned and maintained by LCWSC. Laurens CPW is working with DHEC to get rid of the smell and taste geosmin adds to the water. (Photo by LCWSC)

Laurens, South Carolina – High levels of geosmin in Lake Rabon  are still affecting the smell and taste of water for Laurens Commission of Public Works and Laurens County Water and Sewer Commission customers.

While Lake Rabon is owned and maintained by LCWSC, the CPW water treatment staff is tasked with identifying a process to treat the geosmin, and they are working with DHEC officials on solving the issue, according to a press release by CPW Tuesday afternoon.

“We are continuing to test various types and dosages of carbon to treat the geosmin,” said CPW General Manager John Young. “The Laurens CPW takes safety and water quality very seriously. The water is completely safe to drink and  use domestically. Once the correct product is identified and the correct dosage is determined, we will then get another permit from DHEC to implement that treatment process.

Geosmin is a natural organic compound with a distinct earthy flavor and aroma produced by certain
microorganisms, typically after periods of heavy rains and high heat.  It’s naturally occurring and it’s found in minute amounts in mushrooms, beets and soil. Geosmin levels were even higher in Lake Rabon about 10 years ago, when customers had the same drinking water issues.

“Again, we apologize for the length of time this process has taken,” Young said. “Please be assured that all available resources are being devoted to solving this problem. We ask for continued patience while we work through this event.”


  1. Vicky Tapia on July 28, 2019 at 2:14 am

    Im sure with all the technology we have. The water needs to be fixed. The smell makes me puke.

  2. Jennifer martin on July 30, 2019 at 5:01 am

    With the monies you make off of the people of this county , and you seem to be dragging your feet for what ever reason is beyond me!! I know you have the ability to fix this ? I like to think you do !! Its your business. I’m positive your not drinking this swill !! Yet it’s ok for us to? Get off your duff and fix it already!!! My water bill gets paid every month , you cash the check, so my end is done. Do your job !!! Quit pinching pennies for your stock holders and do right by your customers

  3. well water testing columbia sc on October 7, 2019 at 4:43 am

    Great information shared. Looking for more.

    • Judith Brown on October 10, 2019 at 12:54 pm

      This was one of several stories, however not all were posted online.

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