'Big Spring' may take drastic measures for water - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

'Big Spring' may take drastic measures for water

The E.V. Spence Reservoir, the only source of drinking water for the town of Robert Lee, has less than 1% of its water left. The E.V. Spence Reservoir, the only source of drinking water for the town of Robert Lee, has less than 1% of its water left.

BIG SPRING, TX (CNN) - Severe drought conditions in West Texas have led to a unique plan to recycle wastewater to the drinking faucet.

More than 100 years ago, the small Texas town's namesake was a popular watering hole for settlers heading west.

But recent droughts have made water scarce. Now, the small town is constructing a $13 million water treatment plant to turn sewage wastewater into drinking water.

The new treatment plant will provide two million gallons of water every day at a quality people like, said Colorado River Municipal Water District Director John Grant. "It'll be as good quality water with less salt as you could find anywhere," Grant said.

But the idea still doesn't taste right to a lot of people, like Benito Lara. "That's not a good idea at all," Lara said.

Lara said the plan is too much, and if the treatment is put into operation as planned at the end of next year, he will have to leave town.

This part of West Texas has only seen three inches of rain in the past year. The drought is drying out the area's three reservoirs.

The nearby E.V. Spence Reservoir, which is the only source of drinking water for the neighboring town of Robert Lee, only has less than 1% of its water left.

Robert Lee Mayor John Jacobs said the water situation is so dire his town could run out of water in six months.

An emergency pipeline is in the works but he thinks turning wastewater into drinking water is the future.

Jacobs admits the new treatment plan is not appealing, but added, "Then again, going thirsty isn't either."

 

Copyright 2011 CNN. All rights reserved.

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