SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – Harvest Water, the landmark recycled water project led by Regional San, is one step closer to delivering California’s largest agricultural water recycling project after securing state funding. On Wednesday, June 21, the California Water Commission confirmed its commitment to award Harvest Water Proposition 1 grant funding— in the amount of $291.8 million from the Water Storage Investment Program (WSIP). In collaboration with the California Natural Resources Agency, California Water Commission, California Department of Fish and Wildlife and California State Water Resources Control Board, the Harvest Water team has worked diligently to meet the grant requirements and reach this significant milestone. The state’s investment supports Regional San’s effort to deliver up to 50,000-acre feet per year of tertiary-treated recycled water to approximately 16,000 acres of farm and habitat lands in southern Sacramento County.
Construction of the infrastructure needed to make Harvest Water a reality is projected to begin in late 2023 and be completed in early 2026. Regional San will conduct public outreach along the project area as construction begins on a series of recycled water pipelines and a new pump station, located at the EchoWater Resource Recovery Facility (EchoWater Facility) near Elk Grove. Once operational, Harvest Water will supply billions of gallons of drought-resistant, recycled water per year, offering numerous near-term benefits to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
“Harvest Water provides a variety of long-term environmental benefits,” said Regional San General Manager Christoph Dobson. “Not only does the project increase water supply reliability, but we are also positively impacting local ecosystems. The funding confirmation for Harvest Water is both an investment in Sacramento’s future and a testament to Regional San’s unwavering commitment to environmental sustainability.”
About Harvest Water
Initial studies and planning for Harvest Water began a decade ago in conjunction with Regional San’s facility upgrade known as the EchoWater Project. The EchoWater Facility will produce the high-quality tertiary-treated recycled water needed for Harvest Water. Ultimately, Harvest Water will deliver this safe and reliable supply of recycled water to facilitate groundwater recovery, boost sustainable agriculture and strengthen local habitats.
Harvest Water reinforces Regional San’s commitment to environmental stewardship, offering a new resource management and discharge option and an alternative water supply for local agricultural needs. By reducing the need to pump groundwater, the project has the potential to increase groundwater storage by 370,000 acre-feet–approximately one-third the size of Folsom Lake.
The project will also sustain a healthy water supply for more than 5,000 acres of riparian and wetland habitats, supporting a longer migration window for fall-run Chinook salmon through increased streamflow volume in the Cosumnes River and improving regional water quality by reducing the salinity load to Sacramento River and Delta waterways.
In addition to the Prop 1 grant funding, Regional San has been conditionally awarded a $30 million grant from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation as part of the Title XVI Water Reclamation and Reuse Program.
About Regional San
Regional San owns and operates the regional wastewater conveyance system and the EchoWater Resource Recovery Facility, which is located near Elk Grove, California. We provide wastewater conveyance, treatment, and resource recovery services to about 1.6 million people throughout the Sacramento region, and our facility is the second largest of its kind in the nation. Learn more at regionalsan.com.
About California Water Commission
Funding for Harvest Water has been provided in part from the Water Quality, Supply, and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014 and through an agreement with the California Water Commission.
Mary Elise Conzelmann
Harvest Water Video: