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Reservoir Project in California Aims to Store Recycled Water

A reservoir and water dam project aiming to store recycled water is on track, according to water management officials.

The Santa Margarita Water District gave a tour of the Trampas Canyon Reservoir and Dam on Saturday, Nov. 16. Construction began in January 2018 and is expected to finish by 2020.

The dam and reservoir are south of Ortega Highway on land acquired from Rancho Mission Viejo. The reservoir is intended to hold 1.6 billion gallons of recycled water.

Olivenhain Municipal Water District Logo

Olivenhain Municipal Water District Converts 7th HOA in Encinitas to Recycled Water

Encinitas, Calif. — Olivenhain Municipal Water District connected Village Park Townhomes 2 Homeowners Association to its recycled water system this week. Using recycled water to meet irrigation needs will lower the HOA’s water bills and save an estimated seven million gallons of potable water each year.

“We are happy to see another HOA make the decision to invest in recycled water for irrigation,” said OMWD Board President Ed Sprague. “Converting to locally produced recycled water is a sustainable choice for customers like HOAs, municipalities, golf courses, and schools.”

Pure Water Oceanside Project Construction Slated for 2020

The City of Oceanside is joining the City of San Diego and East San Diego County in adding advanced purified water to its drinking water supply. The Pure Water Oceanside project is expected to break ground next spring and begin producing advanced purified water in 2022.

The Padre Dam Municipal Water District, Helix Water District and the City of San Diego, are among the water agencies in San Diego County that are developing or expanding water recycling to increase the local water supply.

Recycled Water Now Flows Through Repurposed Agricultural Pipeline Benefiting Area’s Watershed

Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District, Riverside County Flood and Water Conservation District and the City of Lake Elsinore recently celebrated the transformation of an abandoned agricultural pipeline that has now been converted to move water from EVMWD’s Regional Water Reclamation Facility into Lake Elsinore. The supplemental recycled water provides an additional source of water for the lake.

Storage in Lake Mead - San Diego County Water Authority - Public Opinion Survey - 2019

Survey: San Diego Region Strongly Supports Enhancing Water Reliability

San Diego County residents strongly support efforts to continue improving water supply reliability and they largely trust local water agencies to do that work, according to a regional public opinion survey released today by the San Diego County Water Authority.

An overwhelming majority (94%) of respondents favor expanding the use of recycled water for agriculture and irrigation, and 79% support purifying wastewater to drinking water standards with advanced treatment technologies.

In addition, 71% of respondents back efforts by the Water Authority to store water in Lake Mead on the Colorado River for use during droughts and emergencies, and to help avoid water shortages on the river.

Public willing to make additional investments in reliable water

Nearly two-thirds (64%) of respondents understand that providing safe and reliable water supplies is more costly in San Diego than many other parts of the country, and many indicate a willingness to make additional investments. More than 6 in 10 (64%) residents say they would pay $5 more a month to increase reliability and enhance local control over water supplies, with 50% showing willingness to pay $7.50 more per month, and nearly half (45%) saying they would pay $10 more each month.

“Our region’s residents appreciate the importance of maintaining safe, reliable water supplies and the role of public water agencies to support our $231 billion economy,” said Water Authority Board Chair Jim Madaffer. “They also recognize that continuing to develop locally controlled water supplies – while making efficient use of existing sources – is critical for our future.”

San Diego Region committed to water efficiency

The survey also makes it clear that San Diego County residents remain committed to using water efficiently even though the region’s water supplies are sufficient to meet demands. Ninety-two percent of respondents agree that water-use efficiency is a civic duty, and 70% say they have taken actions to reduce their home water use in the past 12 months.

The Water Authority has performed periodic public opinion research over the past two decades to gauge residents’ knowledge and attitudes about water issues. The latest survey of 1,063 adults in San Diego County was conducted by Encinitas-based True North Research from Aug. 16 to 27, and results were provided to the agency’s Board of Directors during today’s regular monthly meeting.

Affordable housing, homelessness, most pressing regional issues

Survey results show that affordable housing is the most prominent top-of-mind issue (31%) in the region, followed by homelessness (21%) and cost of living (12%). Only 3% of respondents mentioned water-related topics such as drought, cost or quality as the most important top-of-mind issue facing San Diego County. Four years ago, when statewide drought conditions were peaking, water issues ranked first (33%).

 

The latest survey also indicates that almost everyone agrees that a safe, reliable water supply is important for a healthy regional economy (94%) and San Diego’s desirable quality of life (93%). That’s a key tenet of the Water Authority’s ongoing Brought to You by Water outreach and education program, and an increase from prior years.

Public trust in water agencies to deliver reliable supply

When it comes to supply reliability in San Diego County, more than half (52%) of respondents expect it to improve or stay about the same over the next year. Residents were divided in their optimism over the region’s long-term reliability. While 42% expected supplies to improve or remain the same over the next 20 years, 48% thought supply conditions would worsen. However, nearly two-thirds (65%) of respondents trust local water agencies to ensure a reliable water supply over the long-term.

The 2019 survey also explored issues of cost. The survey showed that few residents know how much they pay for a gallon of tap water. After being told that the retail cost of municipal tap water in the San Diego region is about one cent per gallon, nearly 6 in 10 (58%) respondents said tap water is an excellent (29%) or good (29%) value, with 24% percent saying it is a fair value.

On the topic of water rates, nearly 6 in 10 (59%) survey respondents agree that additional increases may be necessary to increase the reliability of our region’s water supply.

Complete Survey: SDCWA Water Issues Survey 2019 Report v3R

 

 

Olivenhain Municipal Water District Logo landscape design workshops

Olivenhain Municipal Water District and Surf Cup Sports to Save Up to 100 Million Gallons of Potable Water per Year with New Recycled Water Infrastructure

Encinitas, Calif. — Olivenhain Municipal Water District turned on the tap to start providing recycled water to Surf Cup Sports, LLC. By irrigating approximately 55 acres of grass sports fields with recycled water, OMWD and Surf Cup Sports will save up to an estimated 100 million gallons of potable water per year, reducing potable water demand and improving sustainability.

Symposium attendees enjoy hot- and cold-brewed coffee made by locally-owned Bird Rock Coffee Roasters using purified recycled water at the at the 34th annual WateReuse Symposium in San Diego. Photo City of San Diego

WateReuse Symposium Showcases City of San Diego’s Pure Water

Locally-roasted coffee and home brewed beer made with purified recycled water from the City of San Diego’s Pure Water Demonstration Facility was showcased Sept. 10 in San Diego during two special events at the 34th annual WateReuse Symposium.

Pure Water San Diego presented two events featuring beverages made with a key ingredient: purified recycled water.

Coffee and beer made with purified recycled water

WateReuse symposium attendees judged a “Pure Brew” competition among members of San Diego’s Quality Ale and Fermentation Fraternity (QUAFF). Photo: City of San Diego

WateReuse Association Symposium attendees judged a “Pure Brew” competition among members of San Diego’s Quality Ale and Fermentation Fraternity. Photo: City of San Diego

In the afternoon, symposium attendees were served hot- and cold-brewed coffee made by locally-owned Bird Rock Coffee Roasters. In the evening, a symposium reception featured a “Pure Brew” competition where attendees judged the best of 10 home brewed beers from members of San Diego’s Quality Ale and Fermentation Fraternity.

Pure Water San Diego is the City’s phased, multi-year program that will provide one-third of San Diego’s water supply locally by 2035 by purifying recycled water to produce safe, high-quality drinking water. The program offers a cost-effective investment for San Diego’s water needs and will provide a reliable and sustainable water supply.

The WateReuse Symposium, the nation’s premier conference on recycled water, was held in San Diego Sept. 8-11. This year’s theme was “Collaborate to Innovate.” Approximately 800 water professionals from across the nation attended the symposium over the four days.

READ MORE: Pure Water Day Delivers Pure Family Fun

 

California Moves To Boost Recycled Water

A new plan recommends four strategies to advance water reuse in California over the next three decades – an important part of both the state and regional water resilience portfolio.

The California WateReuse Action Plan includes a comprehensive set of proposed actions that will more than double the use of water recycling in California and help prepare the state for the impacts of climate change, according to WateReuse California, which released the plan in July.

Padre Dam Demonstration Facility-Padre Dam MWD photo

California Moves To Boost Recycled Water

A new plan recommends four strategies to advance water reuse in California over the next three decades – an important part of both the state and regional water resilience portfolio.

The California WateReuse Action Plan includes a comprehensive set of proposed actions that will more than double the use of water recycling in California and help prepare the state for the impacts of climate change, according to WateReuse California, which released the plan in July.

But getting to that goal will require several steps, including: Completing research to advance water recycling and potable reuse; developing and streamlining recycled water regulations and permitting; increasing grant and loan opportunities to expand recycled water infrastructure; and, implementing integrated regional planning.

The U.S. EPA is developing a similar plan to advance water reuse nationwide.

California WateReuse Action Plan

The California WateReuse Action Plan recommends strategies for increasing water recycling statewide. Graphic: WateReuse California

San Diego water agencies collaborate on plan

Recycled water is expected to be the next major source of local water supply for the San Diego region – and the region has a long history of working together toward that goal.

The San Diego County Water Authority collaborated with its member agencies to provide feedback on the plan’s development.

“We appreciate how this new plan aims to increase water supply diversification, including recycled water,” said Lesley Dobalian, principal water resources specialist with the Water Authority, and a contributor to the final action plan.

“Within the next 15 years, potable reuse and recycled water is projected to make up more than a quarter of San Diego County’s supply, but reaching our potential will depend in part on statewide implementation of the plan’s key findings,” Dobalian said.

Increasing San Diego County's Water Supply Reliability through Supply Diversification

Recycled water and potable reuse are forecast to make up 26% of San Diego County’s water supply by 2035. Graphic: San Diego County Water Authority

Water Resilience Portfolio

In July, the Water Authority Board endorsed Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order N-10-19, directing development of a water resilience portfolio approach that meets the needs of California through the 21st century.

On July 18, state officials toured San Diego County water infrastructure to see the region’s successful water portfolio approach for supply diversification, as they work to create the statewide water resilience portfolio.

In San Diego County, several agencies are developing or expanding water recycling plans, including the City of San Diego, Padre Dam Municipal Water District, Helix Water District, the City of Oceanside, and several additional projects in North County.

National water reuse action plan

At the national level, EPA is also developing a Water Reuse Action Plan, or WRAP, to advance water reuse. The Water Authority met with its member agencies and submitted comments to the U.S. EPA for the WRAP.

A draft WRAP is expected to be released by the federal agency at the national WateReuse Association Symposium September 8-11 in San Diego.

“California is widely recognized as a national and world leader in water recycling,” according to the California WateReuse Action Plan. “Recycled water supplies offset approximately 9% of the state’s urban water demands and agricultural reuse provides reliable water supplies for farmers throughout the state.”

WateReuse California Symposium Sept. 8-10 in San Diego

The U.S. EPA plans to release a draft Water Reuse Action Plan to advance water reuse, at the national WateReuse Association Symposium September 8-10 in San Diego.

Goleta Water District Updates Permit To Sell Recycled Water To Ag Users

The Goleta Water District has updated its recycled water permitting so it can now sell to agricultural customers, although not many of them are interested in buying. Recycled water, which the district has produced and sold since 1997, cannot be used for groundwater recharge, but was used for landscape irrigation, construction dust control, industrial cooling, and toilet and urinal flushing. State law has allowed more uses in the intervening years, and with a modernized permit, the district can now sell recycled water for agricultural irrigation and industrial and manufacturing uses, said Ryan Drake, the district’s water supply and conservation manager.