SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — San Jose’s mayor says it’s time to take a look at the water we flush down the toilet as a partial solution to California’s drought.
Mayor Sam Liccardo got a tour of the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center Monday, and was impressed by the product.
“The water tasted great. It tasted just like the water out of my tap,” Liccardo said after taking a drink of the water that had once flowed through a toilet.
The water is sent through a series of high-tech filters that remove even microscopic contaminants, and is finally zapped with UV light for further sterilization.
After the recycled water is treated, it would be piped to retention ponds where it would seep slowly back into underground aquifers.
Liccardo says the treated water could make a big impact on the state’s water usage.
“We may be in a new normal of very dry conditions, and we have to move quickly to insure we have enough water for our residents and for the businesses that are so essential here in our valley,” Liccardo said.
Water officials say an explanation of the treatment process could help decrease the ick factor many residents see in using wastewater.
“Once people are aware of the processes we’ve put in place, they get much more comfortable with drinking this water,” Santa Clara Valley Water District Board Chairman Gary Kremen said.