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Water district moves forward to expand recycled water with city of Sunnyvale, Cal Water and Apple Inc.

Contact: Marty Grimes
Office: 408-630-2881
Mobile: 408-681-9265

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Date: Oct. 2, 2014

Water district board authorizes CEO to execute five agreements to expand recycled water

SAN JOSE—On Tuesday, Sept. 23, the water district board authorized its chief executive officer to negotiate and execute five agreements with the city of Sunnyvale, California Water Service Company (Cal Water), and Apple Inc. The agreements will enable the water district to forge significant partnerships to advance recycled water as a drought proof supply in Sunnyvale.

“This partnership between Sunnyvale, Cal Water and Apple is a momentous milestone that will allow the west side of Santa Clara County to expand its recycled water programs and help the water district take a step closer in meeting our goal to increase recycled water from 5 percent to 10 percent by 2025,” said the water district’s chief executive officer, Beau Goldie. “This increase will help us weather multiyear droughts in the future.”

In 2013, the water board authorized the CEO to approve a cost-sharing agreement with Sunnyvale on the planning and design of the Wolfe Road Facilities to expand recycled water in Sunnyvale and West Santa Clara County for non-potable reuse (NPR) The additional five Wolfe Road Facilities agreements between the water district and partners include: two agreements with Sunnyvale—water supply and construction cost-sharing agreements; two agreements with Apple—funding and dedication agreements; and one agreement with Cal Water—a wholesaler-retailer agreement. In addition, draft terms are being developed for a future Long-Term Recycled Water Integration Agreement with Sunnyvale.

“As a member of the recycled water committee, I want to thank district and city of Sunnyvale staff for their tremendous hard work, the council members who are on the joint committee, and for the cooperation from Apple and CalWater,” said water district board member Linda LeZotte. “This took such a collaborative effort to make this happen, and it needs to happen.”

Construction of the Wolfe Road Facilities will expand non-potable recycled water use by serving the new Apple campus in Cupertino, as well as other potential customers in the Wolfe Road area. The water district will serve as a recycled water wholesaler in that system. Construction of the Wolfe Road Facilities also helps establish a framework for potential potable reuse, including indirect potable reuse (IPR) projects in Sunnyvale and the west side of Santa Clara County. One of the most promising alternatives is for the water district to partner with Sunnyvale to cost-share on the upgrade of their Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP) and develop an option to use most of the recycled water produced by Sunnyvale (approximately 10 million gallons per day) for future potable reuse.

The total cost of the project, including planning, design and construction, is estimated at $17.5 million. Through the cost-sharing agreement, contributions from Apple, Cal Water, and the city of Sunnyvale are $4.8 million, $1.5 million and $2.1 million respectively. The water district and the city of Sunnyvale jointly applied for and received a $2.5 million grant for the project from the California Department of Water Resources. The water district’s cost-share portion for the total project is estimated at $6.6 million.

The water district is currently developing an overarching recycled water master plan for the entire county which will incorporate individual master planning efforts by the four recycled water producers in the county. Completing the Wolfe Road Facilities and planning for the potential expansion of recycled water for potable reuse in Sunnyvale is a key component of the recycled water master planning effort and will help the water district reach the board’s recycled water policy and goals.

Other ongoing master planning efforts include the South Bay Water Recycling Master Plan encompassing the cities of San Jose, Milpitas, and Santa Clara; the South County Recycled Water Master Plan Update (where the water district serves as wholesaler) covering the cities of Gilroy, Morgan Hill and an unincorporated portion of the county; and a recycled water plan in the city of Palo Alto where the water district has recently initiated communications with Palo Alto to form a joint recycled water policy committee.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District manages an integrated water resources system that includes the supply of clean, safe water, flood protection and stewardship of streams on behalf of Santa Clara County's 1.8 million residents. The district effectively manages 10 dams and surface water reservoirs, three water treatment plants, an advanced recycled water purification center, a state-of-the-art water quality laboratory, nearly 400 acres of groundwater recharge ponds and more than 275 miles of streams. We provide wholesale water and groundwater management services to local municipalities and private water retailers who deliver drinking water directly to homes and businesses in Santa Clara County.