Prolonged triple-digit heat and dry weather this week have intensified water shortages in Texas, bringing 94 percent of the state to "extreme" or "exceptional" levels of drought. The National Weather Service reports that Texas has received less than half of its normal rainfall since January; the past ten months are now drier than any other ten-month period in Texas's recorded history. In response, the town of Big Springs recently announced that it will break ground on a new $13-million water treatment plant, allowing officials to recycle wastewater and return it to the city's drinking supply. The city—and much of the state—already uses "raw water" on golf courses and for other municipal projects, but the Big Springs plant will become Texas's first to use recycled water for drinking.
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