MIDLAND, Texas — Water is a valuable resource, but here in West Texas we don't see a lot of it.
This makes water reclamation plants, like the one run by the City of Midland and Pioneer Natural Resources, all the more valuable.
A group of college interns got to tour the Midland facility Thursday to learn all about the process.
The facility treats wastewater to repurpose it and help reduce the amount of drinking water used by Pioneer and other places.
Pioneer says it uses roughly 95% of the reclaimed wastewater, with the other 5% available for use in agriculture.
"I really enjoy learning how water impacts the oil and gas industry. I feel like it is a vital resource. We have to make sure we are using sustainably, using it properly, we are trying to reduce our consumption while treating it," said Esha Krishnan, an intern with UT Austin.
"Here at this facility we are able to see how this partnership has cultivated this great connection with the cities nearby and how we can use that in our industry and how that not only supports this city itself but people around the world," Krishnan said.
Pioneer hosts facility tours every year, bringing 40 students to Midland in 2022 to spend a week learning about their operations.
The city and Pioneer spent about eight years and $134 on upgrading the facility, which had its grand opening in 2021. A contract between the two parties is set to run through 2049, with an extra 20 years being added on a possibility.