Sacramento, Calif. — Efforts to increase recycled water use in the Sacramento region got a significant boost last week. The State Water Board approved the Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District’s (Regional San’s) wastewater change petition, giving Regional San the right to deliver its highly treated recycled water to agricultural and habitat conservation lands in southern Sacramento County. Using recycled water for these purposes is a safe alternative that helps the region responsibly manage its limited water resources.
Once complete, Regional San’s South County Ag Program will be one of the largest water recycling projects in California. The program will deliver up to 50,000-acre feet per year of tertiary-treated recycled water to an estimated 16,000 acres of farm and habitat lands. Currently, these lands utilize groundwater for irrigation. By reducing farmers’ reliance on pumped groundwater, the program will help restore groundwater levels. As a result, significant ecosystem benefits are expected along the lower Cosumnes River.
“Securing these water rights is a major milestone and brings Regional San one step closer to our vision of providing regional sustainability through the use of recycled water,” said Christoph Dobson, Regional San’s Director of Policy & Planning. “Regional San takes seriously its commitment to environmental stewardship, and contributing to a sustainable environment for future generations is a critical part of what we do.”
Last summer, the California Water Commission awarded up to $280.5 million in Proposition 1 grant funding to help make the South County Ag Program a reality for the Sacramento region. Among the eight proposed water storage projects considered by the Commission, the South County Ag Program ranked second overall and received the maximum funding amount Regional San requested.
With these major milestones achieved, Regional San will continue planning efforts with local farmers and begin preliminary designs for the recycled water distribution system needed to convey recycled water to the project area.
Learn more about the South County Ag Program at regionalsan.com/SoCoAg.
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Regional San owns and operates the regional wastewater conveyance system and the Sacramento Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant located near Elk Grove. We provide wastewater conveyance, treatment, and disposal service to about 1.4 million people throughout the Sacramento region. Learn more at regionalsan.com.
CONTACT: Nicole Coleman, Public Affairs Manager
916.876.6246 office | 916.704.5502 cell