Construction Begins to Expand Protection of Groundwater Basin from Seawater Intrusion

Pipeline is Part of Visionary Project That Will Provide New Source of High Quality Water

The Orange County Water District (OCWD) has announced that construction is underway on a pipeline that will help provide additional protection to Orange County's vast groundwater basin from saltwater intrusion.

The pipeline, running from Ellis Avenue and Ward Street in Fountain Valley to Adams Avenue near the Santa Ana River, is being built as part of the Groundwater Replenishment (GWR) System, an innovative project designed to deliver a new supplemental source of high quality water. The System will take highly treated sewer water from the Orange County Sanitation District, which currently is sent to the ocean, and purify it to drinking water standards or better using reverse osmosis, which is used by many bottled water companies.

The additional water will be used to expand the seawater intrusion barrier as well as provide a new source of high quality water to improve the overall quality of the water in the groundwater basin -- the primary source of water for north and central Orange County residents. The 9,000 feet of new pipeline will deliver the additional water to the barrier once the project is completed in 2007.

"The groundwater basin is one of Orange County's most precious resources," said Denis Bilodeau, president of the Orange County Water District Board of Directors. "Expanding the seawater barrier is needed to help maintain this natural resource for future generations."

The Orange County Water District

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