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DEP Helps Fund Project to Protect and Recharge Wakulla County’s Aquifer

Friday, May 12, 2023
Division of Water Restoration Assistance
Program Area: 
Division of Water Restoration Assistance (General)

Wakulla County Golf Course Project Groundbreaking Ceremony:

DEP recently awarded Wakulla County over $4.9 million to replace the irrigation system and install rapid infiltration basins (RIBS) for effluent disposal at the Wakulla County Golf Course. The funding was awarded through DEP's Alternative Water Supply Program and came from State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds and Springs Funds. Projects funded through this program prioritize regional projects in the areas of greatest need and projects that provide the most significant benefit to the environment.

“Wakulla County is grateful for DEP’s commitment to safeguarding our aquifer and springs. To date they have invested over $74 million in funding for wastewater infrastructure improvements and septic to sewer connection projects,” said County Administrator David Edwards, “this new project allows the golf course, previously irrigated with water from the aquifer, to be utilized as the county’s primary aquifer recharge site.”

The golf course is in a Primary Focus Area of the Wakulla Springs Basin Management Action Plan (BMAP). The BMAP was created with the goal of restoring the basin. Since its creation, the county has implemented multiple strategies necessary to achieve this goal. Working with DEP has allowed planning for future capacity needs, benefiting generations of citizens and our environment. In 2012, the county began pursuing funding to expand wastewater treatment by .650MGD (million gallons per day) using advanced wastewater treatment standards, the highest standard in Florida. After years of work to secure approval and grant funding, the county’s treatment capacity increased to 1.2MGD. With an average current flow of .780MGD, .600MGD can be sprayed on the golf course to recharge the aquifer safely. Upon completion of the RIBS and golf course spray system, the county plans to have a spray capacity of 2.0MGD.

“Projects like this are vital to sustaining Florida’s natural water resources for generations to come,” said DEP Deputy Secretary of Ecosystem Restoration Adam Blalock. “Through this partnership with Wakulla County, this alternative water supply project is a critical component in recharging the aquifer and supporting the reduction of total nitrogen in the aquifer and nearby Wakulla Springs, a first magnitude spring.”

Last Modified:
February 7, 2024 - 2:27pm

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