SDCWA Briefs WRC on Potable Reuse and Storm Water Capture Efforts

Toby Roy of the San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) briefed WRC members at the July meeting on SDCWA's efforts to advance potable reuse and storm water capture in the San Diego region. 

SDCWA provides about 80 percent of water used in San Diego County and builds, owns, operates and maintains regional water infrastructure. 

Roy explained that San Diego County has few natural water assets to support our economy and quality of life. For example, we are “groundwater poor.”  Unlike most other parts of Southern California, which have vast groundwater basins, we are not hydro-geologically blessed with groundwater basins. 

San Diego, of course, also gets vert little rainfall – only nine inches a year on average. 

The last full year that our natural water assets were sufficient to meet the demands of the population and economy was 1946. Increasingly, San Diego has had to rely on imported water supplies to ensure the region has enough water. 

The overall goal is to increase San Diego's water supply reliability through diversification of sources. Local supplies will grow significantly with the deliveries from the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant and the Pure Water San Diego program. By 2035, it is projected that 16 percent of our supplies will come from potable reuse and 10 percent from seawater desalination, among other local sources. 

SDCWA is also focused on storm water and surface water capture, Integrated Regional Water Management Planning, reservoir augmentation, legislative advocacy and other outreach to boost supplies. 

To see Roy's presentation, click here.

Jonathan Heller