Aquifer Storage and Restoration Project
Improving Water Quality
• The City of Hastings is working closely with the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality, Nebraska Department of Health, Upper Big Blue NRD, Little Blue NRD, and other water quality experts to design this system to reduce the high level of nitrates migrating through the aquifer and into the City wells.
• The highest level of nitrates are located at the top of the aquifer. The cleaner water resides at the mid-level and deepest depths of the aquifer.
• Water with the higher level of nitrates will be pulled from the aquifer and used in the Irrigation Water Storage Facility to create a well-head protection buffer zone while water from the mid to lower depths will also be pumped out and re-injected back into the aquifer. This buffer zone will ensure clean water continues to migrate to the City's drinking water supply wells.
Cost Effective Solution
• This innovative approach will not only improve drinking water quality it is also far more cost effective than building full scale water treatment facilities.
• Water with higher concentrations of nitrates is safe for irrigation of parks, lawns and crops. This high nitrate water can be beneficially used saving on the need to add more nitrate-based fertilizer.
• Careful monitoring of the aquifer will enable Hastings Utilities to make cost effective adjustments to the protective extraction well system to ensure long-term availability of clean drinking water. Aesthetics, Safety and Security Are By Design
• The landscaping of the irrigation storage facility will include a row of trees planted along the west side of the facility. Native flowers and grasses will be used throughout the landscaped area.
• The total area of the two ponds is 22 surface acres and a maximum depth of 20 feet.
• The construction of the Irrigation Storage Facility will be constructed to withstand flooding. The berms are located outside of the 100 year floodway.
• The storage facility will have an attractive black vinyl coated 8-foot-high chain link face to provide additional safety and security.
Q: Is this a long term solution?
A: Hastings Utilities believes this will be a long-term and cost effective solution for the community.
Q: Will there be odors and is this a breeding ground for mosquitoes?
Q: Will construction be disruptive for the community?
A: This project is expected to begin in July 2016 and be completed by July 2017. It will not require any roads to be closed during construction.
$75 million. - Estimated cost of traditional water treatment facility
$46 Million - Estimated cost of Aquifer Storage and Restoration Project
$29 million = Total Savings to the Community