Residents distrust Boring Company's plan to dump wastewater in a river

Musk's Boring Company wants permission to dump its wastewater directly into the Colorado River, and to spray it over fields, rather than pipe it into a municipal sewer and wastewater handling system. Even though some of the residents notionally like Mr. Musk, they don't want him dumping waste in the river unless he plans to swim in it daily.

What is the Boring Company doing these days? Isn't its CEO absent and at Twitter?


Several wondered why a company owned by a self-styled environmental champion wouldn't find a way to recycle wastewater, rather than dumping it into the Colorado. (The Colorado River in Texas is different from the longer Colorado that flows through other Western states.)

Many, including Bastrop Mayor Connie Schroeder, wanted Musk's companies to pipe wastewater into the public system, rather than dumping it themselves.

The Boring Company's permit application, first filed by Gapped Bass LLC on its behalf in July 2022, would authorize the company to build its own wastewater treatment facility for the restrooms, break rooms and on-site bistro at the company town Musk is building in Bastrop. The permit would allow Boring to spray wastewater into fields as well as discarding it into the river.

The discharge rate of 142,000 gallons per day is not very high by local standards. The city itself discharges around 5 million gallons per day into the river, state environmental officials told the crowd at Tuesday's hearing. A single wastewater treatment facility in Austin, 30 miles upstream of Bastrop, is authorized to discharge some 75 million gallons per day.

Still, most viewed Musk's Boring Company with suspicion, given its record of brash moves and seeming disinterest in following local permitting regulations.