City joins in efforts to pursue new ways to provide reliable water supplies

Mesa Water District (Mesa Water®), Orange County Water District (OCWD) and the cities of Huntington Beach and Newport Beach are joining together to spearhead coastal Orange County’s water supply resiliency efforts by pursuing innovative ways to sustainably provide local, reliable water supplies to the region.

Mesa Water was awarded $250,000 from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to lead the local groundwater Supply Improvement Project (Local SIP) feasibility study, in partnership with OCWD, the City of Huntington Beach and the City of Newport Beach. The study will explore the benefits of brackish groundwater desalination to enhance local and regional water supplies. Mesa Water’s board of directors recently authorized a contract to Black & Veatch Corporation to conduct the study.

Desalinated brackish groundwater was identified as a potential new source of water to ensure local reliability in the future, as well as to improve local reliability for the Orange County Groundwater Basin and the other 18 agencies that serve water from this aquifer.

“The City of Newport Beach is pleased to join this important effort that may further improve our region’s water sustainability and drought resilience,” said Mark Vukojevic, director of Newport Beach’s Utilities Department. “We appreciate that Mesa Water and the other project partners are once again bringing innovative ideas and solutions to diversify Orange County’s water supply.”

“Pure, plentiful and affordable water is fundamental to our quality of life, and key to the economic development of our community,” said Shawn Dewane, Mesa Water Board president. “Mesa Water supports the development of cost-effective and environmentally sensitive sources of water, including recycling, groundwater clean-up and brackish desalination. The funding for this critical effort will help us study new opportunities to augment our local water supply.”

“At the Orange County Water District, we are unwavering in our responsibility to explore every possible avenue to enhance our water supply. Diversifying our sources and moving toward greater local reliance is not just important, it’s essential for ensuring a sustainable and resilient water future for our community, now and for generations to come,” added Cathy Green, OCWD board president.


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