With the ongoing drought in Texas showing no sign of relief, water has become a hot topic. From the government to the news, there is a constant flow of information on water usage restrictions, towns going dry, and weather systems that are impacting the drought. We decided to look into the matter a little further, and found a few facts about Texas water you probably do not know.
1. On September 3, 2013, Governor Rick Perry swore in the first full-time Texas Water Development Board. This board, made up of three members, was created in response to criticism that the volunteer panel was working too slow and needed to be replaced. If approved by voters, this board will oversee the $2 billion state water fund that was proposed to fund projects for the next 50 years.
2. Water supplies are so low in some cities, people are drinking their own treated wastewater. Treated wastewater is safe to drink, but holds a certain “ick” factor. Most of Texas has not adopted this approach but if water supplies keep dwindling at their current rate, this will become the norm. Many other states like California and Florida have already adopted treating wastewater to help conserve their water supplies. The water has proven time and time again to be as clean as regular treated water.
3. You may be left wondering where is our water going? About 60% of the Texas water supply goes to agriculture. The next biggest user is energy, with approximately 5% going to coal power and fracking and 2.5% to cooling thermometric plants.
4. There is an additional water source underground that could supply the state for an estimated 176 years, but at the moment it is too salty to drink. Desalination is a process of removing salt and other minerals from saline water. It can cost up to four times that of other water treatments, and even more for actual seawater desalination. But with the state of our water supply, this treatment has become necessary. Our first permanent seawater desalination plant will open on South Padre Island in 2014. Several dozen small desalination plants already operate in West Texas and El Paso, desalinating water from the groundwater supply.
Regardless of how we get our water, water conservation is something we must all adopt to protect our future water supply. We can help you with your water conservation and water treatment needs. Contact us for more information.