The use of reclaimed water in the southern and western parts of the United States has been common practice for over 40 years. These water short areas have realized the value of utilizing highly treated wastewater (reclaimed water) and consider it a resource rather than a disposal problem. Growth impacts on drinking water supplies in New England, and specifically in Portsmouth, have now brought this concept to New Hampshire. Currently the Pease Golf Course is using approximately 200,000 to 300,000 gallons per day (gpd) of potable water for irrigation in the summer months. The City of Portsmouth supplies this potable water from the municipal distribution system. This use is significant, and with projected growth development in the area, future potable water demands will continue to escalate making it prudent to investigate alternate water sources to supplement golf course irrigation water and other large scale non potable uses. The City of Portsmouth owns and operates the 1.2 million gallon per day (mgd) Pease Wastewater Treatment Facility (WWTF) which accepts wastewater flows from several businesses at the Pease International Tradeport. This facility currently discharges treated effluent to the Piscataqua River. This Reuse Feasibility Study evaluates the possibility of providing reclaimed water from the Pease WWTF to the Pease Golf Course for irrigation source water and to other potential users. Use of reclaimed water provides several environmental benefits including preservation of valuable potable water, provides a means to recharge the groundwater table rather than simply discharging the treated effluent to the Piscataqua River, reduces the fertilizer (nitrogen) demand at the golf course, and will provide a net positive improvement to the estuarine water quality in the watershed by applying the nutrients in the effluent to the turf on the golf course instead of into the river.
Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership, Durham, NH
City of Portsmouth, "Water Reuse Feasibility Study" (2006). PREP Reports & Publications. 176.