Rio Rancho plans to pour effluent into the aquifer
by Christie Chisholm, Weekly Alibi, February 23, 2012
Rio Rancho’s waste is being wasted. The same is true for most cities, which treat their sewage well enough to be used for gray water purposes but then send it downriver. Due to the plight of the desert and a rapidly growing population, Rio Rancho no longer wants to send off its sewage.
The city plans to inject it into the aquifer instead.
The project sounds scarier than it is, says Bruce Thomson, professor of civil engineering and director of the Water Resources Program at the University of New Mexico. “It’s extremely low-risk,” he says, adding that the project is environmentally friendly since it conserves resources. Still, people have an instinctually negative reaction to the idea of what’s called “toilet to tap,” and some worry about the safety of the plan.