Olivenhain Municipal Water District Designated as State’s Medium Recycled Water Agency of the Year

By on April 9, 2019

Olivenhain Municipal Water District (OMWD) was recognized late last month as the medium-sized Agency of the Year by the WaterReuse Association of California. The award honors OMWD’s development of local and regional recycled water resources that conserve potable water, as well as its leadership and its outreach to legislators, regulators, and large irrigators.

OMWD was previously recognized by the WaterReuse Association in 2005 as the small-sized Agency of the Year for having significantly expanded its recycled water distribution system. That system is currently generating 14 percent of the district’s demands with recycled water.

“This tremendous honor reflects OMWD’s ongoing dedication to increasing water supply reliability by reducing imported water demand,” said Ed Sprague, OMWD board president.

The WateReuse Association is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to advance the beneficial and efficient uses of high quality, locally produced, sustainable water sources for the betterment of society and the environment. Founded in 1990 the WateReuse Association works to accomplish its objectives through advocacy, education and outreach, research, and membership.

In addition to the work on behalf of its customer OMWD encourages a regional approach to a recycled water infrastructure. OMWD is currently the lead agency of the North San Diego Water Reuse Coalition, a group of nine North County agencies that coordinate across their boundaries to efficiently and cost-effectively connect recycled water sources with demands. Working together on the North County Recycled Water Project, the nine agencies expect to reduce potable water use by nearly 15 billion gallons per year by 2035.

In order to help meet their own recycled water goals as well as the regional goals, OMWD has also engaged House and Senate committees and federal regulators in the last year on the importance of Title XVI grant funding, which facilitates water recycling projects.

“One agency alone can’t solve the region’s water supply challenges. We need a collaborative, cost-effective, and environmentally responsible approach to water supply planning,” said Sprague.