The San Diego County Water Authority is gearing up to construct a 2.1 million-gallon drinking water reservoir on the Valley Center Pipeline to enhance service reliability throughout the region. The Hauck Mesa Storage Reservoir project in northern San Diego County is part of the Water Authority’s Capital Improvement Program. Construction work is scheduled to begin in early 2021 and is estimated to be completed in the winter of 2022.
Radically transformed from its ancient origin as a vast tidal-influenced freshwater marsh, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta ecosystem is in constant flux, influenced by factors within the estuary itself and the massive watersheds that drain though it into the Pacific Ocean. Lately, however, scientists say the rate of change has kicked into overdrive, fueled in part by climate change, and is limiting the ability of science and Delta water managers to keep up. The rapid pace of upheaval demands a new way of conducting science and managing water in the troubled estuary that is central to California’s water conveyance system.
In the midst of the last drought, California took its first step to regulate how the state uses groundwater. But advocates worry the new rules have favored big agricultural users over small communities, particularly in areas like the San Joaquin Valley.
Serious drought conditions continue in the Southwest, and while some beneficial rain and mountain snow are in the near-term forecast, the expectation of La Niña this winter could be bad news for the region.
It’s that time of the year in California, when water managers, climatologists and meteorologists look at the factors that determine what the winter will bring during Water Year 2020-21 (October 1, 2020 – September 30, 2021).
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently said that La Niña conditions are present in the tropical Pacific, “with an approximately 85% chance of La Niña lasting through the winter.” Forecasters currently think this La Niña will be on the stronger side. For California, those conditions typically mean a drier winter, with increasingly dry conditions heading into 2021.
The San Diego County Water Authority is gearing up to construct a 2.1 million-gallon drinking water reservoir on the Valley Center Pipeline to enhance service reliability throughout the region. The Hauck Mesa Storage Reservoir project in northern San Diego County is part of the Water Authority’s Capital Improvement Program.
Construction work is scheduled to begin in early 2021 and is estimated to be completed in the winter of 2022. The project includes demolition of an abandoned steel tank, and construction of a new 2.1 million-gallon concrete reservoir, isolation vault, and underground flow control facility, as well as other site improvements.
New infrastructure development by the Water Authority and its 24 member agencies ensures the delivery of water to support the region’s $245 billion economy and the quality of life for 3.3 million residents.
Hauck Mesa Storage Reservoir
The new storage reservoir will improve water deliveries by temporarily storing drinking water pumped to the Valley Center Municipal Water District, Vallecitos Water District, Vista Irrigation District, and the Rincon del Diablo Municipal Water District from the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant and the Twin Oaks Valley Water Treatment Plant. The stored water will safeguard water deliveries from unanticipated water interruptions or pump station outages.
“This project is just one of the infrastructure improvement projects the Water Authority is undertaking to fulfill the agency’s mission to provide a safe and reliable water supply for today and the future,” said Kirk Whitaker, the Water Authority’s project manager.
The Water Authority will work closely with the Valley Center community, Valley Center Municipal Water District, and homeowners to minimize short term construction impacts in the area to ensure safe, uninterrupted water service. For more information on the Hauck Mesa Storage Reservoir project, go to the Water Authority’s Future Projects webpage.
The COVID-19 pandemic has not only disrupted the social and economic realities of our communities, but also undermined some of the basic infrastructure we depend on. Our water infrastructure has been at the heart of this realization; its importance to health, hygiene, and safety has never been more obvious, yet millions of disadvantaged and vulnerable households still lack reliable and affordable access to water.
A South Coast community is celebrating a historic deal this week which will help lock in a reliable, drought-proof water supply for the next half century. The Montecito Water District is signing a 50 year water supply agreement with the City of Santa Barbara Wednesday. The water district is buying into the city’s desalination plant, which converts salt water into fresh water.
Scientists can now predict drought and overall water supply on the Colorado River years in advance, according to a new study published by researchers at Utah State University.
The team of scientists believe long-term “ocean memory,” in conjunction with atmospheric effects and the influence of land systems, correlates with cycles of drought in parts of the western U.S., which then leads to water shortages on the Colorado River.
The San Diego County Water Authority will host an online public information session on Oct. 27 about economic considerations related to the proposed Regional Conveyance System. The virtual event will run from 10 a.m. to noon.