- Associated Press - Thursday, April 2, 2015

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (AP) - Wichita Falls’ use of its direct potable reuse system to combat drought has been extended for another year by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

The Wichita Falls Times Record News (https://bit.ly/1NL9Eys ) reports that the city recently received notice that its new ultraviolet barrier had met all requirements for renewal. The city has been using the reuse system to help bolster low water supplies due to severe drought in the city. The UV barrier works as a part of the system.

The commission also told the city that it must install a UV barrier at Cypress Water Treatment Plant as a safety barrier to protect water against cryptosporidium, a microscopic parasite that can cause intestinal problems. According to Daniel Nix, a utilities operations manager, the state was concerned that chlorine would not be enough to remove the parasite and wanted to be cautious.

“We haven’t detected any (cryptosporidium) beyond the microfiltration step, which is the first physical barrier that we have in the process,” Nix said. “The microfiltration has been extremely efficient at removing cryptosporidium.”

The use of UV systems isn’t a rarity in Texas. Nix said Midlothian, Big Spring and El Paso, for example, have been using the systems in their water treatment processes for a while.

The system’s extension does not alter a recent study’s prediction that the city’s drinking supply will last until November 2019.

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Information from: Wichita Falls Times Record News, https://www.timesrecordnews.com

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