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Recycled Water Now Flows Through Repurposed Agricultural Pipeline Benefiting Area’s Watershed
Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District (EVMWD), Riverside County Flood and Water Conservation District (RCFCWCD) and the City of Lake Elsinore recently celebrated the transformation of an abandoned agricultural pipeline that has now been converted to move water from EVMWD’s Regional Water Reclamation Facility into Lake Elsinore. The supplemental recycled water provides an additional source of water for the lake.
Originally an open channel was created to carry floodwaters out of Lake Elsinore. With the new Regional Agricultural Pipeline Conversion in place water is diverted from the open channel and connects it to an existing agricultural water pipeline. With the new pipeline conversion completed RCFCWCD will continue to maintain jurisdiction over the channel.
“The Regional Agricultural Pipeline Conversion eliminates vegetation growth, reduces maintenance costs, decreases evaporation and evapotranspiration, and improves water flows into Lake Elsinore,” stated Andy Morris, president of the board for EVMWD. “In partnership with RCFCWCD and the City of Lake Elsinore we have been able to cost-share the expenses for this project. It is a mutually beneficial project that benefits our region and our watershed.”
Lake Elsinore has previously lost approximately 4 ½ feet of water annually due to evaporation. In 2003 EVMWD began supplementing highly-treated and regulated recycled water into the lake to offset evaporation. As the largest natural lake in Southern California, Lake Elsinore is vulnerable to hot temperatures, limited rainfall and an excess of nutrients due to its location at the end of the watershed. These issues have historically caused Lake Elsinore to experience and suffer with challenges relating to its water quality. The new supplemental water will aid in resolving these problems.