The San Antonio Water System is pushing back following the release of a disturbing report by the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce which predicts major job losses with only a slight water shortage in the region, and encourages SAWS to seek out multiple sources of water.
"Water for business and industry would never be cut because San Antonio has the supplies needed to support economic growth," SAWS said in a statement. "The only cuts we require of our customers is for lawn and landscape irrigation."
The Chamber says it is concerned that SAWS recently dropped three plans to import water by pipeline from other parts of the state, and will focus its water acquisition efforts on a desalination plant currently operating in south Bexar County.
The report warns that with only an 11% water shortage more than 1500 jobs would be lost, and if the water shortage expands to 40% the job losses could top 135,000, essentially halting the region's economy.
Chamber officials say they want San Antonio to have not only 'enough' water but 'more than enough water,' and say economic growth in the future will relay on ample water, not just in Texas but across the USA>
"Our position regarding the three water proposals is still the same--none of them meets our requirements," SAWS said "We are, however, keeping the door open to the possibility that the highest ranked proposal can be viable if it si amended to meet our requirements."
At his State of the City speech last week, Mayor Julian Castro praised SAWS for it's Aquifer Storage and Recovery Facility, which is currently being expanded. It holds roughly two years supply of water and is credited for preventing the city from falling into deep water use restrictions during this past summer's drought.