Regional Recycled Water Advanced Purification Center Logo

A new source of water for Southern California

Water is too precious to use just once.  So the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is making a major investment in a potential water recycling project that will reuse water currently sent to the ocean.

INTRODUCTION

The Regional Recycled Water Program, a partnership with the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, will purify wastewater to produce high quality water that could be used again. The program will start with a demonstration facility and could eventually become one of the largest advanced water treatment plants in the world.

HOW IT WORKS

The Way It Works Graphic

The process begins with wastewater discharged from homes, businesses and industries. After the wastewater has been cleaned and treated, it flows to an advanced water treatment plant where it is further purified. The water then replenishes groundwater basins and is eventually pumped up, disinfected and used again.

THE PROCESS TO PURIFICATION

The Process To Purification Graphic

1

Membrane Bioreactors: Microorganisms remove ammonia and other nitrogen compounds, while membranes filter tiny particles, smaller than 1/100 of a grain of sand.

2

Reverse Osmosis: Pressurized membranes further remove microscopic materials, such as bacteria, pharmaceuticals and salts, eliminating more than 99% of all impurities.

3

Ultraviolet/Advanced Oxidation Process:

Ultraviolet light and a powerful oxidant destroy any remaining viruses and trace chemical compounds.

After wastewater is cleaned and treated through multiple processes, it flows to the Regional Recycled Water Advanced Purification Center for further treatment. The end result is high quality, purified water that could eventually help replenish groundwater.

BENEFITS OF THE PROJECT

The Project helps ensure regional water reliability through diversifying sources, in addition to conservation, local supply development and imported water.

Earthquake Graphic

Earthquake

Prepares the Southland for the event of  a catastrophic earthquake by

increasing local

water supplies.

Drought Graphic

Drought

Produces a drought-proof source of water, readily available
rain or shine.

Groundwater Graphic

Groundwater

Replenishes groundwater basins, which provide 30% of Southern CA’s water supply and have seen levels drop to historic lows in recent years.

Economy Graphic

Economy

Helps meet needs of region’s growing economy and population at a cost comparable to other local water resources.

Wastewater Graphic

Wastewater

Uses region’s largest untapped source of wastewater, currently sent to the ocean.

STARTING SMALL AND SCALING UP

Starting Small and Scaling Up Map

The Advanced Purification Center is a 0.5 million gallon per day demonstration facility that will generate information needed for the potential future construction of a full-scale recycled water plant. It uses a unique application of membrane bioreactors designed to significantly increase efficiency in water recycling. Scientists and engineers will test the process, utilizing full-scale treatment modules, to ensure the resulting purified water meets the highest water quality standards. Once approved by regulators, this innovative process could be used throughout California and even applied around the globe.

 

A full-scale regional recycled water program would produce up to 150 million gallons daily, enough to serve more than 335,000 homes.  Purified water from the advanced treatment facility would be delivered through 60 miles of new pipelines to four groundwater basins in Los Angeles and Orange Counties. These basins currently supply water to 7.2 million people.

DEMO FACIILTY

Cost: $17 million for construction.

Timeline: Under construction, operations begin late 2018.

Demo Facility Image

FULL-SCALE Program

Cost: $2.7 billion to build, $129 million annually to operate, resulting in a water cost of $1,600/acre-foot.

Timeline: 11 years to design and build, once approved.

Full-Scale Facility Image

Milestones in Recycled Water Use

The past five decades have seen recycled water use in Southern California grow exponentially, for both irrigation and groundwater replenishment.

RESOURCES

Videos

ABOUT THE NEW PARTNERSHIP

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a state-established cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving nearly 19 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource management programs.

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Seal

The Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County are a regional public agency consisting of 24 independent special districts serving over 5.6 million people in 78 cities and the unincorporated territory within Los Angeles County. The Sanitation Districts protect public health and the environment through innovative and cost-effective wastewater and solid waste management and, in doing so, convert waste into resources such as recycled water, energy and recycled materials. The Sanitation Districts operate 11 wastewater treatment plants.  The Joint Water Pollution Control Plant in Carson is the largest of these plants and one of the largest in the country. Read more about the Joint Water Pollution Control Plant.

 

 

Sanitation District of Los Angeles County Logo
Metropolitan Water District  of Southern California Seal

The Metropolitan Water District of

Southern California

© 2017 The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.  All rights reserved.

Contact Us:

Regional Recycled Water Program

213.217.6833

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The Way It Works Graphic
The Process To Purification - Membrane BioReactor Illustration
The Process To Purification - Reverse Osmosis Illustration
The Process To Purification - Ultraviolet Process Illustration
Economy Graphic
Starting Small and Scaling Up Map
Demo Facility Image
Full-Scale Facility Image
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Seal Sanitation District of Los Angeles County Logo