During last week’s World Water Forum, Conagua, Mexico’s National Water Commission, announced plans to build a purification plant to treat rain and water runoff. The US$1.3 billion project is expected to be completed in 2012 and is a build/operate contract.
Mexico’s per capita water availability declined to 4,312 cubic meters in 2007 from 18,035 cubic meters in 1950, with some regions, including parts of the Pacific coast in Baja California, reaching “alarmingly low” levels, Conagua said in a report last year on the state of water resources in Mexico. Mexico City itself is built over an aquifer and several areas of the city have sunk over two meters in the past ten years as the aquifer has been depleted.
Incentives for conservation and sustainability are often not in place, so it is refreshing to see these water reuse systems being built. Too often we see an emphasis on securing new sources of water and building massive redistribution systems while existing water sources such as rain and runoff are not captured.