Even With Less Rain, Tampa Bay Water Won’t Leave You Parched
Adequate rainfall is vital to recharging the Floridan Aquifer and filling area rivers, so Tampa Bay Water closely monitors area rainfall to ensure we deliver high quality drinking water to our six member governments while protecting our environment.
So far, 2020 has seen lower-than-average rainfall. March 2020 was one of the driest months in Tampa Bay area history, with less than 0.01 inch of rainfall. Cumulative rainfall for the past 12 months (Aug. 1, 2019 to July 31, 2020) was 3.3 inches lower than average at our wellfields. Rainfall for June ranged from 4.5 to 10.4 inches and averaged 0.3 inches above the historical average for the month, based on wellfield sites. July, however, saw rainfall ranging 2.8 to 8.5 inches and averaged 1.5 inches below the historical average for the month at wellfield sites.
Thanks to the flexibility of our interconnected regional water supply system, Tampa Bay Water has continued to provide our six member governments the water they need while remaining within our permitted pumping limits. For the period ending July 31, 2020, our 12-month running average production for the 11 wellfields in the Consolidated Permit was 83.26 million gallons per day (mgd) compared to the 90 mgd permitted limit. The 12-month running average production from the South-Central Hillsborough Regional Wellfield for the same period was 23.28 mgd compared to the 24.1 mgd limit.
“Tampa Bay Water is the only water utility in the nation with a blend of groundwater, surface water and desalinated seawater,” said Chief Operating Officer Chuck Carden. “Our desalinated seawater and our 15.5-billion-gallon reservoir, which acts as our region’s water savings account, are two drought-resistant components to our unique and diverse water supply, allowing us to meet our members’ needs in a variety of weather conditions.”