Metropolitan helps advance local water supply projects

News for Immediate Release__
Metropolitan helps advance local water supply projects

Projects will increase Southern California’s groundwater, recycled water, desalinated water supplies in face of changing climate

April 15, 2024

Four new local water supply projects that will together produce enough water for 100,000 Southern California homes every year received a $250 million commitment from the Metropolitan Water District as part of the agency’s latest investments aimed at increasing the region’s supply reliability.

Metropolitan’s Board of Directors last Tuesday (April 9) voted to approve separate agreements with the city of Los Angeles; Las Virgenes Municipal Water District and Las Virgenes-Triufino Joint Powers Authority; Eastern Municipal Water District; and Municipal Water District of Orange County and South Coast Water District as part of Metropolitan’s Local Resources Program, which provides economic incentives for water developed and produced from groundwater clean-up, water recycling, and seawater desalination throughout the agency’s six-county service area.

“For decades, investments in local projects have helped strengthen Southern California’s resiliency by reducing demands for imported water supplies and decreasing the burden on our system,” said Metropolitan board’s Vice Chair of Climate Action Nancy Sutley. “Together, with investments in storage and conservation, these projects have become critical as we face the dramatic impacts of climate change that are threatening water sources across Southern California and the western United States.”

Metropolitan General Manager Adel Hagekhalil noted that the Los Angeles and Las Virgenes Municipal Water District-Las Virgenes-Triunfo projects will add a level of water resiliency to areas that faced mandatory conservation in the midst of the last drought in 2022 because of severely limited supplies imported from Northern California.

“These are all incredibly worthy projects that show the true commitment of our member agencies to increasing the reliability of our water supplies in Southern California. We are stronger by working together and all of our region benefits from these investments,” Hagekhalil said." 

“These projects exemplify the type of investments envisioned through the development of Metropolitan’s Climate Adaptation Master Plan for Water, which will address the impacts of the changing climate through our long-term planning and financial investments,” Sutley said.

“They represent the types of go-forward investments that offer no-regrets insurance against future supply challenges,” she added. 

Up to $139 million over 25 years will be provided for the Los Angeles Groundwater Replenishment Project, under Metropolitan’s agreement with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. The project involves developing new facilities that will purify recycled water to recharge the San Fernando Valley Groundwater Basin aquifer. The project is expected to produce 19,500 acre-feet of water per year, starting in 2028. (An acre-foot is about 326,000 gallons of water, roughly the amount used by three Southland families in a year.)

The PURE Water Project being developed by Las Virgenes Municipal Water District and Las Virgenes-Triunfo will purify wastewater at the proposed Advanced Water Purification Facility and deliver water to Las Virgenes Reservoir before eventual potable use and deliver it through 18 miles of new pipelines to portions of Los Angeles and Ventura counties. Anticipated to begin operations in 2028, the project is expected to produce up to 5,000 acre-feet per year, with Metropolitan funding up to $42.5 million for water produced by the project through 2053.

Metropolitan’s agreement with the Eastern Municipal Water District in western Riverside County will provide up to $26.4 million over 25 years for water produced by the Perris North Basin Groundwater Contamination Prevention and Remediation Program. Expected to produce 3,466 acre-feet per year beginning in 2025, the project will treat contaminated groundwater, protect groundwater resources and prevent future contamination in the San Jacinto Groundwater Basin.

Under an agreement with the Municipal Water District of Orange County and South Coast Water District, Metropolitan will provide up to $39.9 million over 15 years for water produced by the proposed Doheny Ocean Desalination Project in Dana Point. The project will treat and convey desalinated water and is expected to produce up to 5,600 acre-feet of water per year within MWDOC’s service area, beginning in 2028.

Since 1990, Metropolitan has contributed over $700 million to 116 local water recycling and groundwater recovery projects throughout Southern California, helping to produce nearly 500,000 acre-feet of water per year, enough to serve roughly 1.5 million Southern California households.


The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a state-established cooperative that, along with its 26 cities and retail suppliers, provides water for 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.