EBMUD relies on dams to store much of the water it supplies to customers. EBMUD manages 28 dams. Our main water supply comes from Pardee Reservoir, in the Mokelumne River watershed in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. South of Pardee is Camanche Reservoir, which stores water for flood control and for downstream users. In the East Bay, there are five local water supply reservoirs and 21 open-cut reservoirs that hold treated water. The dams range from 10 feet to 360 feet tall and were built from the late 1800s to the late 1960s.
Update on dam safety
In September 2017, the State of California Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD) released a new classification and assessment of dams statewide. Nearly all of EBMUD’s jurisdictional dams – 21 in total – were assessed the highest rating of “satisfactory”.
One dam – Lafayette Dam, built in 1927 – was assessed a “fair” rating. A “fair” rating means the dam can be operated safely in current conditions, but could be imperiled in rare events like earthquakes or hydrological conditions. Learn more about actions to step up dam safety.
About EBMUD's Dam Safety Program
EBMUD has a comprehensive Dam Safety Program. Engineers monitor dams using instruments, monthly visual inspections and periodic dam safety reviews to prevent loss of life, personal injury and property damage from the failure of dams. The safety of each dam is reevaluated with advances in geotechnical, structural and earthquake engineering and also if there is evidence of seepage or ongoing ground movement. Most of these dams are under the jurisdiction of the California Division of Safety of Dams. Pardee and Camanche Dams are also under the jurisdiction of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission because they produce hydropower. These regulatory agencies perform independent annual dam inspections.
Information about dam replacement projects:
Over time, EBMUD plans to replace some of its local dammed reservoirs with water tanks. Studies verify that smaller tanks provide reduced maintenance costs, better water quality and greater post-earthquake reliability.
Information about seismic work on dams EBMUD plans to keep:
Contractors: For bid opportunities on EBMUD projects, see Business center.
Published Studies and Information on EBMUD Dams
|Briones Dam Safety Review||23.4 MB|
|Central Reservoir Seismic Final Report||17.5 MB|
|Claremont Reservoir Seismic Stability Evaluation Report||22.9 MB|
|Danville Reservoir Embankment Seismic Stability Evaluation Report||8.9 MB|
|Dingee Reservoir Final Seismic Report||13.5 MB|
|Lafayette Dam Stability Report||21.9 MB|
|Supplemental Geotechnical Investigation Report, Lafayette Dam||17.7 MB|
|South Reservoir Seismic Evaluation Report||9.0 MB|