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EMWD Celebrates Groundbreaking of Perris II Desalter


Perris, CA (March 28, 2019) — Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD) today celebrated the groundbreaking of its Perris II Reverse Osmosis Treatment Facility, which received nearly $50 million in grant funding to expand EMWD’s groundwater desalination program.

The Perris II Desalter becomes EMWD’s third desalination facility at its complex on Murrieta Road in the City of Menifee. Construction is anticipated to be completed in mid-2021.

The new facility has a capacity of 5.4 million gallons per day and will allow EMWD to cumulatively meet the needs of 30,000 households annually through its desalination program.

“This is a milestone day for our District and would not be possible without the support of our state and federal funding partners,” EMWD President Ron Sullivan said. “We appreciate their support and know this will provide a sustainable water supply source for our communities.”

EMWD received considerable external funding to support the program, including:

  • $22.5 million from the State Water Resources Control Board for the construction of the reverse osmosis treatment facility;
  • $25 million in authorizations from the United States Army Corps of Engineers to construct wells and pipelines to deliver water to the facility;
  • $1.2 million from the United States Bureau of Reclamation, including $450,000 to help fund an advanced brine removal system that improves efficiency;
  • EMWD will also receive up to $29 million in credits from The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California through its Local Resources Program, which incentivizes agencies to invest in local water supplies.

The Perris and Menifee areas have brackish groundwater basins that have high salt content and would otherwise be undrinkable. The desalination complex removes the salts and exports them from the region through a regional brine line operated by the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority, of which EMWD is a member agency.

By removing salts, EMWD is also helping to protect the groundwater basin and improve water quality for the future, and protect nearby groundwater basins that have high quality drinking water.

“This facility will further help expand our local groundwater supplies and help provide a reliable water supply, even during extended dry periods throughout the state,” Sullivan said. “As we face a number of water supply challenges throughout the state, EMWD is proud to invest locally so that we may continue to meet the needs of our customers for future generations.”

Perris II Reverse Osmosis Treatment Facility rendering.Ground breaking of desalination facility.


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Eastern Municipal Water District is the water, wastewater service and recycled water provider to approximately 827,000 people living and working within a 555-square mile service area in western Riverside County. It is California’s sixth-largest retail water agency and its mission is “To deliver value to our customers and the communities we serve by providing safe, reliable, economical and environmentally sustainable water, wastewater and recycled water services.” More information can be found at