First Vice President
Denis R. Bilodeau, P.E.
Second Vice President
Philip L. Anthony
Jan Flory, ESQ.
Dina L. Nguyen, ESQ.
Stephen R. Sheldon
Roger C. Yoh, P.E.
Michael R. Markus
The Orange County Water District (OCWD) operates a complex system of more than 25 recharge facilities so it can continue to provide a reliable water supply for the 2.4 million people it serves.
On October 27, OCWD and the Orange County Flood Control District (OCFCD) dedicated Fletcher Basin to increase recharge to the Orange County Groundwater Basin while strengthening flood control for the region.
Fletcher Basin, the 4.8 acre project site located near Fletcher Avenue and Batavia Street in the city of Orange, was formerly used to retard stormwater flow prior to discharge into the Santa Ana River. OCWD manages the Orange County Groundwater Basin and uses a series of basins in Anaheim and Orange, including the new Fletcher Basin, to replenish groundwater supplies. It is extremely cost beneficial to construct and maintain a means of capturing rainwater while gaining more control of our local water reliability. Read More…
The collaboration between OCWD and the Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD) dates back to the mid 1970s when OCSD provided treated wastewater to OCWD for its Water Factory 21, the first plant in the world to use reverse osmosis to purify wastewater to drinking water standards.
The two agencies then went on to jointly build the Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) in 2008. The world’s largest advanced purification facility was expanded in 2015 to produce 100 million gallons of water per day.
Building on nearly 50 years of collaboration, OCWD and OCSD staff recently completed a Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement for the final expansion of the GWRS. Both boards of directors unanimously voted to enter into the agreement, which outlines each agency's responsibilities for each of the projects that make up the GWRS Final Expansion Project. Read More…
The Orange County Water District received a 2016 Cool Planet Award from the Climate Registry and Southern California Edison, for its energy efficiency enhancements made on the Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) Initial Expansion. OCWD Executive Director of Operations Bill Dunivin (pictured) and Public Affairs Director Eleanor Torres attended the Cool Planet Awards ceremony in San Marino, Calif. Read More…
The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) released final 2016 modifications to California’s groundwater basin boundaries, completing a critical step in the implementation of the state’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). DWR presented the final basin boundaries to the California Water Commission, which approved them. Included in the approved boundary modifications were changes proposed by the Orange County Water District to DWR's Basin 8-1, the Coastal Plain of Orange County Groundwater Basin. Read More…
Formal groundwater management in California can be traced back to 1934 when the Department of Water Resources (DWR) mapped and numbered the state’s groundwater basins. In Orange County, the basin was named Basin 8-1, the Coastal Plain of Orange County Groundwater Basin. Since that time, jurisdiction over groundwater basins remained a local concern and management programs evolved to varying degrees. Recent drought conditions and, in some places the over-drafting of groundwater basins, demonstrated the need to enhance management of these important water supplies. Read More…
OCWD Advanced Water Quality Assurance Laboratory Director Lee Yoo and Recharge Planning Manager Adam Hutchinson were invited to participate in Korea International Water Week (KIWW).
Yoo provided a presentation titled “Water Supply and Quality Management in Orange County, California” at a World Water Cities Forum—a part of KIWW.
The importance of the Forum was to discuss and to share leading practices and identify factors that will enable the implementation of innovative and practical solutions for sustainable water supply. Yoo also presented to environmental engineering students at Keimyung University, Daegu, Korea. Read More…
OCWD has more than two dozen recharge basins in the cities of Orange and Anaheim. The water in the basins is “moving”—in some cases, up to five feet a day or more percolates into the groundwater basin. Except for twice a year when the basins are drained and cleaned to maximize stormwater capture, water is replenished and does remain in the basins. The basins can become breeding locales for pesky midges and mosquitos.
The District implements an effective and safe method of eliminating them. Read More…
The Orange County Water District received the Gold Award in the Video/Audio category by MarCom Awards. OCWD was recognized for its 40 minute animated PowerPoint presentation titled “Water Manufacturing Process,” which is used at the start of each Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) tour.
“The District’s Public Affairs team took a serious subject, added creativity and made it extremely interesting. It’s become a great way to educate our guests prior to their GWRS tour,” said OCWD President Cathy Green.
The PowerPoint presentation includes dimensional animations the District co-created with Linda Macpherson of New Water ReSources and Peter Swanson of Global Visions and Associates. They demonstrate the groundwater basin geology and the California water network, among others.
MarCom Awards judges reviewed more than 6,000 entries from throughout the world for its 2016 creative competition for marketing and communication professionals. Winners were selected from over 300 categories in print, web, video and strategic communications.
OCWD’s Advanced Water Quality Assurance Laboratory hosted an Ion Chromatography (IC) User Group meeting with Thermo Fisher. OCWD tests water samples with three different IC systems to detect chloride, sulfate, and bromide that would indicate potential seawater intrusion, nitrate, fluoride, inorganic disinfection byproducts, as well as toxic emerging contaminants like hexavalent chromium and perchlorate. The instruments are used every day, and are vital to many inorganic analyses.
The attendees came from both commercial and public entities throughout Southern California, and included a number of District laboratory staff. Discussion topics covered included IC theory, ion chromatography tandem mass spectrometric (IC-MS/MS) for low level detection of perchlorate and haloacetic acids (HAAs) without a time consuming derivatization process, new analytical technology, and a demonstration of the Chromeleon software eWorkflow for easier methods development. The seminar was well received by all in attendance and facilitated a technical information exchange between District laboratory staff and external colleagues.
The Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS), the world’s largest water purification system for indirect potable reuse utilizes a three-step method: microfiltration, reverse osmosis, and ultraviolet light with hydrogen peroxide for advanced oxidation. A University of California, Riverside (UCR) researcher has recently been awarded $300,000 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to compare the addition of chloramines to the UV/peroxide advanced oxidation process (AOP) and will partner with OCWD to do so.
For the NSF project, UCR Assistant Professor of Chemical and Environmental Engineering Haizhou Liu will team with OCWD Principal Scientist Ken Ishida (pictured) to investigate UV/chloramine AOP and the impact chloramine compounds have on the UV/peroxide AOP commonly utilized for water purification. Read More…
As part of its standard to forge and maintain long-term, positive and proactive relationships with members of the local community and greater water industry and to be transparent about its operations and programs, OCWD board members and staff speak regularly before groups and at events. We participated in the following during October:
- • OCWD President Cathy Green provided a presentation to the Fountain Valley Rotary Club regarding Orange County water supplies.
- • President Green and OCWD General Manager Mike Markus participated at the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) Region 10 Conference “Advanced Water Purification: The Road to Resilience.” President Green, who is vice chair of ACWA Region 10, was moderator of the Large Scale IPR/DPR Projects panel and Mike was one of its panel members.
- • OCWD General Manager Mike Markus was a featured Water UCI panelist, joining other Orange County water managers, discussing “The Future of Water in Southern California,” including the greatest challenges facing their agencies' efforts over the next few years in helping to ensure the reliability, sustainability and quality of California’s water supplies, and the “disconnect” between California’s water problems, and what the public knows about these problems.
- • On behalf of the National Water Reuse Institute (NWRI), OCWD Assistant General Manager Mike Wehner provided the welcome and introduction for their "Workshop on Drought Vulnerability and Tools for Improving Water Resilience" held in Long Beach recently. NWRI, the Department of Water Resources and the Southern California Water Committee cosponsored the event.
OCWD continues to be recognized for its leadership in the water industry. Below are a few of the District’s recent media highlights that feature OCWD and the GWRS:
UCR Today: As Drought Persists, Collaboration Seeks To Advance Technology That Helps Generate New Water Supply by Sarah Nightingale
News Deeply: Ten Experts to Watch on Urban Water Policy and Infrastructure by Eline Gordts
OCWD’s employees are its most valuable resources. It is committed to recruiting the best and enriching their lives to grow within the water industry and the District family.
November 22: 8:00 a.m. Retirement Committee Meeting (C-2)
November 24-25: Holidays
December 7: 5:30 p.m. Board of Directors Meeting (Boardroom)
December 8: 8:00 - 9:30 a.m. Communications/Legislative Committee Meeting (C-2)
December 9: 7:30 a.m. Water Advisory Committee of Orange County (WACO) Meeting (Boardroom)
December 12: 5:30 p.m. GWRS Steering Committee Meeting (Boardroom)
December 14: 8:00 a.m. Water Issue Committee Meeting (Boardroom)
December 15: 8:00 a.m. Administration/Finance Committee Meeting (C-2)
December 21: 5:30 p.m. Board of Directors Meeting (Boardroom)
December 23: Holiday
December 26: Holiday
Thank you to the more than 550 guests that toured OCWD’s facilities in October:
Centennial High School AP Environmental Science students toured the Prado Wetlands and Groundwater Adventure tour guests toured the GWRS, Lab, wetlands, and groundwater basins.
Those touring GWRS facilities included delegation members of Aguas Banaerenses from Buenos Aires, Argentina; teachers from Anaheim High School; students from San Juan Hills High School and the Cal State Fullerton Environmental and Process Control Systems and Health Science classes; attendees of the Orange County Chapter of WateReuse California, Water Now Alliance and Mayors' Innovation Conference; staff from Rosemount Analytical, Inc. and Metropolitan Water District; nursing students from Cal State Long Beach and Cal State Fullerton (pictured); representatives of PWT Chemicals; members of Padre Dam Municipal Water District and Santa Margarita Water District; students from Citrus College and Cal State Long Beach engineering; staff from American Water Chemicals, Inc.; Students & Young Professionals, California Water Environment Federation; and members of the general public.
Public tours of the Groundwater Replenishment System are offered at 10 a.m. on the first Friday of every month; reservations are required. Tours may be scheduled for other days of the week, depending on staff availability. To schedule a tour, request more information or schedule a speaker, please visit www.ocwd.com.
18700 Ward Street
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
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