Once leading the way in Florida, Clearwater's plan to turn wastewater to drinking water is on hold
CLEARWATER — Tampa Bay’s third largest city was supposed to be the first in the state to treat wastewater beyond drinking standards and inject it into the Floridan aquifer so it would make its way back into the drinking supply.
The endeavor began in 2009 with a feasibility study, then a pilot facility that tested the technology for a year. By 2016 Clearwater was the first in Florida to design a full-scale groundwater replenishment facility, modeling it on a similar pioneering plant that launched in Orange County, Calif, in 2008.
Now after 10 years and an investment of $6.2 million, Clearwater has the final design and all permits needed to break ground, still ahead of any other city in the state.