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The demand for water by growing urban populations and agricultural operations in South Florida is expected to increase significantly in the coming decades. Meeting the growing need for water hinges on our efforts to develop region-specific sources that offer an alternative to traditional ground water and surface water. Alternative water sources are important to Florida's future. They also help to make communities less susceptible to the effects of drought.

Developing alternative water sources diversifies our supply while reducing our dependence on fresh water resources. Examples of Alternative Water Supply are: more »
 
 


Alternative Water Supply - Highlighted Projects

From 1997 to 2009, alternative water supply projects totaling approximately $1.2 billion in construction costs were provided partial funding by the South Florida Water Management District. The District provided approximately $160 million dollars in grants toward 436 alternative water supply projects that produced 375 million gallons of water per day. Below are examples of funded projects:


Lake Region Water Treatment Plant photoThe Lake Region Water Treatment Plant serves approximately 25,000 people in the communities of Belle Glade, Pahokee and South Bay in western Palm Beach County. Water from the Upper Floridan Aquifer is treated at the plant using reverse osmosis to produce up to 10 million gallons of water per day. This eliminates the need to use Lake Okeechobee as a public water supply source. Construction was completed in 2008 for a total project cost of $58 million, including $17.1 million in South Florida Water Management District and State approved funding.

South Central Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant photoThe South Central Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant serves Boynton Beach, Delray Beach and adjacent communities in eastern Palm Beach County. An expansion project increased the plant's capacity from 10 million gallons of water per day to 24 million gallons of water per day. The 14 million gallon per day expansion allows the plant to process 100 percent of incoming effluent into treated, reclaimed water available for irrigation, and virtually eliminates effluent discharge through ocean outfalls. The expansion project was completed in 2008 for a total project cost of $18.6 million, including $7 million in South Florida Water Management District funding.

Martin County Utilities Tropical Farms Reverse Osmosis Plant photoThe production capacity at Martin County Utilities Tropical Farms Reverse Osmosis Plant in Stuart was expanded from 2 million gallons of water per day to 8 million gallons of water per day. The 6 million gallons of water per day expansion decreased the plant's dependency on water from the surficial aquifer. Other benefits include limiting the potential for wetland impacts and reducing saltwater intrusion. Plant expansion was completed in 2009 for a total project cost of $11 million, including approximately $2.4 million in South Florida Water Management District funding.

Tohopekaliga Water Authority - Parkway Water Reclamation Project photoThe Tohopekaliga Water Authority – Parkway Water Reclamation Project, near Kissimmee in Osceola County, enhanced the existing facility by installing a covered tank that increases reclaimed water storage capacity to 7.5 million gallons of water per day. A new high-service pump also provides reclaimed water customers with a more consistent supply source and improved water pressure. Improvements were completed in 2009 for a total project cost of $3.8 million, including approximately $982,000 in South Florida Water Management District funding.

Little Cypress Tail Water Recovery Project at C and B Farms photoThe Little Cypress Tail Water Recovery Project at C&B Farms in Hendry County reduces the amount of well water drawn from the Lower Tamiami Aquifer and reduces the farm's energy costs for irrigation. This is accomplished through a drip irrigation system with lift pumps using water recovered from the farm's 200-acre water retention area and irrigation canals. The project also reduces the amount of phosphorus in water discharged to the C-139 Drainage District. Improvements were completed in 2008 for a total project cost of $1.5 million, including $363,000 in South Florida Water Management District funding.


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