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EMWD Completes New Groundwater Replenishment Facility

Water flowing in replenishment basin

Perris, CA (October 28, 2021) — Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD) today celebrated the completion of its Mountain Avenue West Groundwater Replenishment Basins in San Jacinto.

The facility is home to EMWD’s Water Banking program, which aims to replenish local groundwater basins and further prepares our region for times of drought.

“This facility is a major piece of our ability to prepare for future droughts,” EMWD Board President Phil Paule said. “As we continue to face changing water supply patterns throughout the state, our Water Banking program will help us continue to meet the needs of our customers for future generations.”

The facility is part of the Santa Ana River Conservation and Conjunctive Use Program, which is a partnership between six regional agencies and The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, who have worked together on groundwater storage facilities and agreements in the first-of-its-kind regional program.

During years of wet and normal rainfall, EMWD will import water from the State Water Project into the basins, which are approximately 10 feet deep. That water will percolate into the local groundwater aquifer, where it will help replenish supplies and be available for use during future dry years.

The facility is designed to replenish up to 30,000 acre feet of water annually – enough for approximately 75,000 households. The high-quality source water from the State Water Project will also provide long-term water quality benefits to the aquifer.

The new facility is a prime location for groundwater replenishment, as it is in the historic path of the San Jacinto River. The sandy soils allow for excellent percolation rates. Initial modeling shows EMWD could replenish up to six feet of water per day in the basins.

EMWD received nearly $13 million in grant funding from the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority to help support the project and associated extraction wells.

The project included a partnership with the City of San Jacinto, which will own and maintain the landscaped area surrounding the facility, including a new decomposed granite walking path that is open to the public.

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Eastern Municipal Water District is the water, wastewater and recycled water service provider to nearly one million people living and working within a 558-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 diverse customers and the communities we serve by providing safe, reliable, economical and environmentally sustainable water, wastewater and recycled water services.”
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