WASD provides tips, asks for help to protect Miami-Dade County’s water source

Did you know that the delicious drinking water that fills your glass or that you use to make your pot of coffee comes from only about 80 feet from under your feet? Miami-Dade County’s primary water source is the Biscayne Aquifer – a porous rock with tiny cracks and holes that rain water then seeps in and fills, resulting in a natural filtration process prior to undergoing actual treatment at one of Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department (WASD)’s three water treatment plants. WASD withdraws through wells and treats approximately 300 million gallons per day (mgd) from the Biscayne Aquifer.

While groundwater is not the source drinking water in all areas, groundwater is the world’s most extracted raw material on the plant – about 259 trillion gallons of water a year are withdrawn through wells.

Americans are some of the largest users of water, per capita, in the world. In the United States, Americans use 79.6 billion gallons of treated groundwater every day – that’s the equivalent of filling 1,586,000,000 bathtubs with water, which could circle the Earth 60 times.

“In Miami-Dade County each resident’s per capita average use of water a day is 134 gallons. While that is an improvement from five years ago, when the average was 158 gallons a day, we are always looking for ways to conserve our water for future generations, as well as protecting the integrity of the Biscayne Aquifer,” said WASD Director Lester Sola.

The County take precautions to ensure that the chances of outside contamination is decreased by prohibiting certain industries and business from locating near the department’s well fields.

In addition to taking part of WASD’s water conservation rebate programs, the department also would like you to be aware of not potentially contaminating the Biscayne Aquifer.

Household Tips:

Properly store hazardous household substances – such as paints, paint thinners, petroleum products, fertilizers, herbicides, insecticides, and cleaning products in secure containers. Also, make sure to mix these substances over concrete or asphalt where they can be cleaned up or absorbed and when they are no longer needed for use, make sure to dispose of them at an appropriate waste disposal facility or drop-off.

1. Never pour water down the drain when there may be another use for it.

2. Repair dripping faucets and toilets; one drop per second wastes 2,700 gallons a year.

3. Retrofit household faucets by installing aerators with flow restrictors.

4. Choose appliances and fixtures that are water- and/or energy-efficient, such as low-flow toilets.

5. Don’t run a faucet when not using the water, such as while brushing teeth.

6. Only run the dishwasher when it is fully loaded.

7. Operate clothes washers only when they are full, or set the water level to match the load size.

8. Plant native and/or drought-resistant grasses, ground cover, shrubs, and trees.

9. Use a shutoff nozzle on the hose for car washing that can be adjusted to a fine spray.

10. Avoid overwatering the lawn; a heavy rain eliminates the need to water for up to two weeks.

11. Raise the mower blade to a higher level to hold soil moisture and strengthen the root system.

It is the priority of the Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department to provide safe, reliable service to its customers. For additional information about Department services and programs, visit the department’s website.