City Drops Wastewater Reuse Project

The City of Wichita Falls, Texas, ends use of an emergency direct potable reuse system.
City Drops Wastewater Reuse Project
Wichita Falls Public Utilities Manager Daniel K. Nix watches water fill a microfiltration tank.

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As heavy springtime rains brought relief from the drought that gripped north Texas, the City of Wichita Falls has pulled back from using a 50-50 mix of treated wastewater and lake water at the Cypress Water Treatment Plant, putting an end to the city's direct potable reuse project.

“We’re in great shape,” Wichita Falls Mayor Glenn Barham told the local rotary club. “Even if we don’t get another drop of runoff, thanks to the rains and redirecting water, we have 20 years of water left.”

Lakes and reservoirs in the area are now near full levels. The direct potable reuse program will be replaced by a more permanent indirect potable reuse project, where treated wastewater will be pumped directly into Lake Arrowhead, according to a report by KERA News.

“Residents seem to have learned the value of conservation. They’re using 16 million to 17 million gallons a day, down from 30 million to 35 million before the drought,” a Fort Worth Star-Telegram editorial stated. “Nobody wants that kind of terrible drought to happen again, but everyone knows it’s possible. People who handle it as well as Wichita Falls will be fine.”

To learn more about the emergency reuse pipeline and how Wichita Falls successfully navigated a severe drought, read "Dry On The Plains," from the May 2014 issue of Municipal Sewer & Water.

Source: Times Record NewsKERA News


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