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Ground Water Recharge Using Waters of Impaired Quality
The Water Factory 21 project in Orange County, California, is the first injection project involving highly treated municipal wastewater. The injected water provides a barrier to seawater intrusion, but also enters potable water supply aquifers. The project has been in operation since 1976 and has provided significant data on the capability and reliability of advanced wastewater treatment processes to remove microbiological and chemical constituents, ground water quality, and monitoring techniques.
Another California example is the Montebello Forebay project in south-central Los Angeles County. This project demonstrates indirect potable reuse via surface spreading of reclaimed water. The Montebello Forebay project has been in operation since 1962 and has been the subject of extensive research to investigate health-related issues.
The Phoenix, Arizona, example illustrates the extensive research undertaken to demonstrate the capability of soil-aquifer treatment (SAT) to treat relatively low quality treated municipal wastewater to levels acceptable for many nonpotable applications upon extraction.
The El Paso, Texas, project is the first injection project in the United States where the sole intent of the project is to augment the potable water supply aquifer using reclaimed municipal wastewater. It is a relatively new project and will provide important data as it builds an operational history.
The Long Island, New York, example demonstrates the effectiveness of artificial recharge in a more urbanized, eastern setting, where climate and water availability are significantly different than in the West. Stormwater runoff is recharged into infiltration basins to replenish the ground water withdrawn for use by Long Island residents, thereby also helping to retard seawater intrusion into the aquifers that provide the primary source of drinking water for the area.
Another eastern project, the stormwater drainage wells in Orlando, Florida, is included to illustrate another approach to using excess stormwater runoff for artificial recharge, thus helping to solve a wastewater disposal problem as well as a water supply problem.
Finally, one international example is provided. The Dan Region project in Israel provides information on a large-scale recharge operation that incorporates SAT of treated municipal wastewater and subsequent extraction of the water for extensive agricultural irrigation. The project is well documented and has been in operation for almost 20 years.
WATER FACTORY 21, ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA
The Orange County Water District (OCWD) was formed by a special act of the California legislature in 1933 for the purpose of protecting the Orange County ground water basin. In 1955, OCWD was given the added responsibility of water management. Early in its history, OCWD secured the right to all water in