Two of Arizona’s water policy experts are the conference committee co-chairs for the upcoming AWRA Virtual Summer Conference Connecting Land & Water for Healthy Communities.
April 23, 2021
Reclaimed Water Opportunities for Tucson
On Wednesday, April 14, the WRRC hosted John Kmiec, Tucson Water Interim Director, for a Brown Bag webinar entitled “Tucson Water’s Reclaimed Water System: Providing the Right Water for the Right Use for Nearly 40 Years.” The presentation began with an overview of the legal context that gave the City of Tucson the right to 90% of the recycled water generated by its residents. In 2020, recycled water represented 12% of the city's portfolio, Colorado River water made up 82%, and remediated groundwater, 6%. Recycled water is delivered through 173 miles of purple pipelines to more than 1,000 customers to irrigate golf courses, school fields, and parks. Recycled water is also used for managed aquifer recharge - the process of storing water in aquifers for later recovery. This method allows for the natural treatment of water as it percolates into the aquifer.
Tucson has several recharge facilities: the Sweetwater Wetlands Underground Storage Facility (USF), operating since 1984, the Santa Cruz River Managed USF (1999), and the Lower Santa Cruz River Managed USF (2003). Since 2019, the Santa Cruz River Heritage Project has used effluent recharge to restore riparian habitat to the downtown area. The Southeast Houghton Area Recharge Project opened to the public in 2020, after 11 years of planning. In addition to storing reclaimed water during the winter, this multi-benefit project provides a recreational area with native plants and biking and hiking trails, and offers educational opportunities for schools. Among the many ideas for future water reuse, Kmiec emphasized the possibility of new commercial and industrial uses for this renewable water supply.
Photo: Michael Thomas Bogan
April 30, 2021
AZ Experts Well-Represented at Conference Connecting Land & Water
April 30, 2021
Water and COVID-19 in Indian Country
On Wednesday, April 21, the Arizona Institutes for Resilience, in partnership with the WRRC and the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy, hosted the second episode of the "Water Solutions for Our Warmer World" webinar series. This session, “Water and COVID-19 in Indian Country,” featured a panel of Indigenous leaders and experts to discuss shared issues and concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on Native Nations.
April 30, 2021
APW Director Kerry Schwartz Retires
At the end of June 2021, Kerry Schwartz, Associate Specialist and Director of Arizona Project WET will retire from the University of Arizona. Kerry started her position at the Water Resources Research Center nearly 22 years ago, after stating in the interview that this was her dream job. Since that time, she has worked tirelessly to create the impressively innovative, community-driven UArizona Extension water education program, Arizona Project WET (APW).