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Tampa Bay Water – A Look Back

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Prior to 1998, Tampa Bay Water had a 20-year history under a different name and a different charge. In the 1980's and 1990's there were huge rainfall deficits and between 1970 and 2000 there had been in excess of 100 percent growth. Lack of rainfall, increased demand and drainage issues led to environmental damage and stress on wellfields and surrounding wetlands. This presentation will outline how Tampa Bay Water, its six member governments and the local regulators joined to turn that situation around. The success story is a look back at before, during and after the impact of a Master Water Supply program, costing over 600 million dollars, taking the three county area from 100 percent groundwater to a drought-resistant blend of approximately 60 percent groundwater, 30 percent surface water and 10 percent desalination water. The program included:

72 mgd surface water treatment plant

25 mgd seawater desalination treatment plant

15 billion gallon off stream reservoir

47 miles of large diameter pipe

Hundreds of environmental and construction permits, and

Acquisition of hundreds of parcels of land

Tampa Bay Water now serves a population of over 2.4 million people with an average 250 million gallons per day of potable water. The presentation will also address how Tampa Bay Water continues to look at innovative ways to address the continuing needs of the growing community.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2008

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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