SRCSD's Water Recycling Program
Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District's (SRCSD) Water Recycling Program (WRP) is a partnership between SRCSD, the Sacramento County Water Agency (SCWA) and Sacramento County Environmental Management Department, Water Protection Division. SRCSD provides recycled water treatment and monitors recycled water quality, while SCWA distributes recycled water to customers and monitors recycled water use.
Recycled water is treated wastewater that has undergone additional filtration and disinfection processes to make the water safe for non-potable (non-drinking) uses. Since April 2003, SRCSD's cutting-edge WRP has provided an environmentally responsible, safe water supply for non-potable purposes - such as landscape irrigation, industrial uses and environmental restoration.
SRCSD's water recycling facility is located on the property of the Sacramento Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant (SRWTP) in Elk Grove, CA. Currently the WRP provides up to 3.5 million gallons per day of recycled water to parks, landscaped street medians and commercial and school sites in the Laguna West, Lakeside and Stone Lakes developments - also known as the Phase I Demonstration project. Increased use of recycled water can reduce the region's dependence on groundwater and surface water supplies, especially during drought periods and times of high potable water demand and low supply. Given these great benefits to water recycling, it's easy to see why SRCSD is committed to continuing its investment in water recycling.
Recycled water treated at SRCSD's water recycling facility meets and exceeds the California Department of Health Services' most stringent irrigation requirements for recycled water. There has never been a documented health-related problem traced back to recycled water when used in accordance with state guidelines.
- California's recycled water standards are among the most stringent in the world.
- Tertiary treated recycled water is virtually pathogen-free.
- Recycled water is treated to a degree very close to drinking water quality.
In January 2004, SRCSD's Board of Directors approved the concept for a large scale WRP, which includes the following goals:
- Increase water recycling throughout the Sacramento region on the scale of 30 to 40 million gallons per day over the next 20 years.
- Increase utilization of recycled water to expand SRCSD's effluent management options beyond continued discharge to the Sacramento River.
- Increase utilization of recycled water to meet growing non-potable demands, allowing Sacramento area water purveyors to reduce demands on their existing potable water supplies and reduce the need for additional water supplies in the future.
Benefits of Recycled Water
- Water recycling can also help with Clean Water Act compliance and meeting future discharge regulations.
- Water recycling provides an environmentally responsible and safe water supply for environmental restoration projects, such as wetlands.
- Increased use of water recycling would reduce the region's dependence on groundwater and surface water supplies for non-potable water uses.
- The recycled water facility is designed to provide the highest possible degree of treatment under varying circumstances.
- Recycled water is delivered through purple pipes that are completely separate from the potable (drinking) water pipes.
- Routine inspections are conducted to ensure no cross connection between potable water pipes and recycled water pipes has occurred.
- The water recycling facility and distribution system are monitored continuously.