Recycled Waste Water Plant Gaining National Attention

by Anayeli Ruiz 
NewsWest 9

A new water source headed Big Spring's way has received national attention. Now the question on everyone's mind is how will the water district going to turn their toilet water into drinking water? NewsWest 9 headed to Big Spring to find out the answers to all your burning questions.

West Texas is known for being dry. That's why 11 years ago, the Colorado River Municipal Water District, started looking for a way to bring water in.

So they came up with the idea of building a reclamation plant. Right now, the waste water from Big Spring is sent to the lakes, mixed in and is then pumped to your home. But with the reclamation plant, they want to intercept the treated waste water before it goes into the lake.

"What we are going to do is membrane filtration. It will take out any suspended solids and the next set of filters will demineralize it. They actually take out the dissolved solids and particles and then it goes through disinfection process. Once it's all cleaned up then we are going to blend it in with the water that we are pumping from the lakes," Grant said.

"Ironically, we are actually improving the quality of water. Because that water has all those constituents in it, today it gets mixed in with the lake water we pump it back here for the cities. We're going to improve the quality of the water," Grant said.

But some people in town are concerned about what all is being flushed down the toilets, such as prescriptions or illegal drugs. So how will they get those chemicals out of the water?

"The process we are using especially the demineralization process takes out a lot of those dissolved solids," Grant said.

So what happens if something goes wrong at the treatment plant? Could dirty water be headed to your home?

"If something goes wrong with the treatment process we will be able to catch it before it goes into the raw water system," Grant said.

But not all residents are too convinced this new plant will supply fresh water.

"We shouldn't be the guinea pigs I guess. They should look in to this more," Thomas Tifuro, said.

"Well I think that we are in desperate times and I think that if they think it's good than I think we are good to go," Debbie Riger, said.

The water reclamation plant will provide two million gallons a day. It's estimated to be completed by December of 2012 and Big Spring, Midland, Odessa and Stanton residents will be using this water.