In 2006 a court decision mandated reductions in pumping from the Seaside Aquifer and in 2009 the State issued Cease and Desist Order (CDO) imposing a deadline of January 1, 2017 to greatly reduce water withdrawals from the Carmel River. There is an urgent need to find an alternative water supply for California American Water’s Monterey County District. Failure to meet the 2016 deadline could have harmful consequences for California American Water, its customers, and the community.
The Monterey Peninsula Regional Water Authority (MPRWA) is a Joint Power Authority (JPA) created in 2012 to find a solution to the Peninsula Water Shortage caused by the over drafting of the Carmel River. The Authority consists of six Peninsula cities: Carmel-by-the-Sea, Del Rey Oaks, Monterey, Pacific Grove, Sand City and Seaside, with Monterey County participating on the Governance Committee. The Mayor of Pacific Grove serves a Director of the Authority.
Several source water projects are currently in progress in the Monterey Peninsula.
Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project (Desalination)
The Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project will consist of slant intake wells, the desalination plant and related facilities including brackish water pipelines, product water pipelines and brine disposal facilities. Depending on the availability of water from the Groundwater Replenishment Project the desalination plant will be sized at either 9.6 mgd or 6.4 mgd. This facility will be owned and operated by California American Water.
Pure Water Monterey: Ground Water Replenishment (GWR) Project
Pure Water Monterey is an advanced water recycling project, jointly developed by two public agencies – Monterey Peninsula Water Management District (MPWMD) and the Monterey Regional Water Pollution Control Agency (MRWPCA). This groundwater replenishment project would recharge the Seaside groundwater basin with high quality purified water. The project is sustainable, publicly-owned and would improve and protect drinking water supplies. The GWR project is in advanced planning stages. Funding will be provided by grants, project partners and water users on the Monterey Peninsula.
Pacific Grove Local Water Project (LWP)
The Pacific Grove Local Water Project consists of the construction and operation of a new satellite recycled water treatment plant (SRWTP) to recycle a portion of Pacific Grove’s municipal wastewater. Recycled water produced at the SRWTP, located at the retired Point Pinos Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP), during the first phase, would be used primarily for landscape irrigation at the Pacific Grove Golf Links and El Carmelo Cemetery, owned by the City of Pacific Grove and located adjacent to the SRWTP. The initial Project consists of installing 2,800 linear feet (LF) of recycled water pipeline that would convey recycled water from the SRWTP to the Pacific Grove Golf Links and El Carmelo Cemetery’s existing irrigation systems.