Local News

Sep 19, 2013 12:38 PM by Rachel Cole - rcole@kristv.com

Water Conservation and Quality on the Rise

CORPUS CHRISTI - Drought restrictions went into place back in May for the city. Since then, water department officials say residential water use has dropped by the millions. Plus, recent rainfall is also a helpful factor for water quality, even though Gabriel Ramirez, the Water Quality Manager in the city's water department explains that more rain is still needed.

"We'd like to get way up there above 40 percent again to get out of this drought," Ramirez said.

Current watershed levels are at 33 percent, according to Ramirez, he says the rainy weather is great but it needs to fall more North.

"We'd like it to fall in the watershed, Lake Corpus Christi, Nueces River also Choke Canyon, that's what'll get us out of this drought," he said.

That way the rainwater can flow all the way down to the reserviors and eventually to the water treatment facility. That's where it's chemically treated for consumption based on it turbidity levels.

"There could be an increase in turbidity levels with heavy rainfalls. Turbidity being I guess floaties in the water, less chemical would be used to treat the water and have the floaties settle to the bottom," Ramirez added.

Now, with more fresh water coming in and conservation measures in place, the city's usage is decreasing. Ramirez says just last month about 73 million gallons of water was used every day. That's down 10 million gallons since last August.

Meanwhile, Ramirez says they're working to create an easier formula for residents to monitor their own water quality.

"Where a hundred would be perfect and zero would be the worst. So, you'll be able to easily check the water quality of the raw water," he said.

For now, residents can check online real-time data to see the quality rating for their water. The official new formula should be ready to roll out at the beginning of the year according to water department officials.

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