What Is "Reuse"?
While recycling is a term generally applied to aluminum cans, glass bottles, and newspapers, water can be recycled or reused as well. Water recycling is reusing treated wastewater for beneficial purposes such as agricultural and landscape irrigation, industrial processes, toilet flushing, and replenishing a ground water basin (referred to as ground water recharge).
Water recycling offers resource and financial savings. Wastewater treatment can be tailored to meet the water quality requirements of a planned reuse. Recycled water for landscape irrigation requires less treatment than recycled water for drinking water.
Does League City Reuse Treated Wastewater?
Water reuse is becoming an increasingly attractive water management strategy to meet projected shortages. The 2007 Texas State Water Plan projects that over the next 50 years (2010 to 2060) wastewater reuse throughout the state using existing infrastructure will reach about 1.3 million acre-feet. This is a substantial increase compared to the 420,000 acre-feet projected in the 2002 state water plan.
League City currently sends approximately 100 million gallons of treated waste water effluent to irrigate golf courses throughout the city. We also use treated waste water for irrigation, chemical feed, and to wash down equipment at the Dallas Salmon Wastewater Treatment Plant.
In the future, League City will require commercial and residential development to use treated waste water for irrigation of common areas, medians, and subdivision entrances. The city will also employ reuse to irrigate landscaping at city facilities.
Types of Reclaimed Water
Texas law (30 TAC Chapter 210.32) identifies two types of reclaimed water: Type I and Type II. Type I reclaimed water is defined as use of reclaimed water where contact between humans and the reclaimed water is likely. Examples of such use include landscape irrigation at individual homes or on public golf courses, fire protection, toilet or urinal flushing, and irrigation of pastures for milking animals.
Type II reclaimed water is defined as reclaimed water where contact between humans and the water is unlikely. Examples of Type II use include dust control, cooling tower applications, irrigation of food crops where the reclaimed water is not expected to come in direct contact with the edible part of the crop, and maintenance of impoundment or natural water bodies where direct human contact is not likely.
League City is planning a new wastewater treatment plant that has tertiary disk filtration to achieve the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Type I treatment levels.