Florida, along with many other states are facing drinking water shortages in the long term. As a result, they are trying to come up with new ways to meet the water needs of the state.
A thought on the horizon for Florida is to recycle their wastewater, potentially use the recycled water for irrigation and eventually for drinking water.
USA today reports:
“Highly processed sewage, which water experts call indirect or direct potable reuse, is becoming more of a reality here as providers scramble to find enough water to meet current and future demand.
But public perception and the unknown are two major hurdles.
“I don’t think people here are ready for the idea yet,” said Andy Fenske, who operates the waste-water system in this Southwest Florida city of 165,000 residents…
“The bacteria is one of the easier things to deal with. It’s all the other viruses and pharmaceuticals that are more difficult,” said Linda Young, executive director of the Florida Clean Water Network. “I’m not convinced they can get that water 100% clean.
“It makes total sense to me to use reclaimed water for agriculture,” she said. “We shouldn’t be using drinking water aquifers to supply farms and industrial uses anyway.”
There are many foreseeable issues with recycling wastewater, and Florida will have their work cut out ahead of them to sell the idea, but it is good to see the state recognizing its needs ahead of time and trying to put things in place to solve the problem.
Managing and providing for water demand is becoming an increasing issue as urbanization continues, and populations shift location within countries.
Infrastructure management practice examines future demand trends, and then projects infrastructure asset and non-asset solutions to meet demand.
Water recycling and reuse will be an option to be considered as part of demand forecasting solutions.
Is water recycling and reuse going to be a component of the strategies that your utility and/or region will deploy.
If it is, what infrastructure management planning do you need to undertake to prepare for this?
PHOTO CREDIT: Miami Beach by Pablo Fernández via Flickr Creative Commons License