EBMUD relies on melting snows flowing into the Mokelumne River watershed in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains to refill District reservoirs. In dry years like this, customer conservation isn’t enough to meet demand. In 2014, for the first time , EBMUD will tap Sacramento River water supplies to protect residents and businesses from further cutbacks.
On April 22, 2014, the EBMUD Board of Directors approved the purchase of 16,000 acre feet of Sacramento River water to make up the water needed to serve customers through the summer. That’s enough water to fill the Oakland Coliseum 24 times.
The water will be delivered through the Freeport Regional Water Facility, located south of Sacramento on the Sacramento River. This project, completed in 2011, is the result of a cooperative effort between the Sacramento County Water Agency and EBMUD and provides drinking water for customers of both agencies. During dry years only, EBMUD may complement its aggressive water conservation program by using Sacramento River water via the Freeport Regional Water Facility water-- up to 100 million gallons of water per day.
The Sacramento County Water Agency supplies water to approximately 35,000 customers in the central part of Sacramento County. Sacramento County Water has historically relied on groundwater to supply drinking water to its customers. With the Freeport Regional Water Facility in operation, the agency can supplement groundwater use with up to 85 million gallons of water per day of surface water supplied by the Freeport Facility to minimize the effects on the groundwater table in central Sacramento County.
For More Information
For photos, videos, maps, and more information, visit the Freeport Regional Water Project website. Click on Intake Animation to see the project and the map showing how Sacramento River water is delivered to EBMUD’s Mokelumne Aqueducts.