Water-Related News

Tampa wastewater reuse project under fire again

TAMPA – For years, environmentalists and Tampa city officials have sparred over what to do with about 50 million gallons per day of highly treated wastewater currently being dumped into Tampa Bay.

The city wants to divert the wastewater to replenish the Hillsborough River, help lower salinity levels in Sulphur Springs and, possibly, augment the city’s drinking supply.

Opponents say traces of pharmaceuticals or household beauty products could endanger residents and wildlife. And they say the project would be an expensive boondoggle that would increase water bills by up to $67 a month.

On Monday, yet another fight over Purify Usable Resources for the Environment (PURE) began as city officials held briefings with reporters while opponents held a news conference on the banks of the lower Hillsborough River in Sulphur Springs.