North Coast County Water District Drought Preparedness and Water Conservation Plan
|Sponsoring Agency||North Coast County Water District|
|Public or private land?||()|
|Location Description||The Plan has four sub-projects which are all located in the District's service area within the City of Pacifica in San Mateo County.|
The North Coast County Water District Drought Preparedness and Water Conservation Plan ("Plan") is designed to increase water conservation in response to the current drought and in anticipation of on-going and future drought conditions. The Plan will yield multiple benefits including increased water supply reliability, reduced dependence on regional imported water, conjunctive use of surface and groundwater, and overall improved water conservation within the District’s service area.
Part 2 - Detail
The North Coast County Water District ("District") is proposing a project concept referred to as a “Drought Preparedness and Water Conservation Plan”, and consists of multiple sub-projects, each being actively pursued by the District to meet and reduce water demand during periods of drought, and to provide operational flexibility and increased reliability for the District.
The District’s Plan consists of four sub-projects (A through D), each discussed below:
A. Pipeline Replacement Program
In 2013, the District initiated a study to develop a 20-Year Water Master Plan and Capital Improvement Program (“CIP”). A pipeline replacement program was identified and included as a high-priority CIP project, and the District’s study identified specific pipelines which present the greatest risk for leaks and failures. The District has many pipelines in its system which are older asbestos-cement (“AC”) pipes and which are prone to leaks. The goal of this sub-project is to replace the oldest and most critical pipelines in the water system.
B. Supplemental Groundwater Supply
This sub-project involves siting, permitting, engineering, and construction-related activities associated with obtaining supplemental groundwater supplies in the District’s service area. This includes possible construction of exploration well(s) and a new groundwater production well(s). The District is evaluating possible sites for construction of a new groundwater well on parcels owned by the District. The funding requested for this sub-project will be utilized for the cost to construct a groundwater exploration well and a production well, including engineering, permitting, and construction costs.
C. Regional Desalination Feasibility Study
Serving a coastal community, the District is investigating the feasibility of working with neighboring communities, including Daly City, San Bruno, Montara Water District, and Half Moon Bay, for example, to explore the costs and benefits of constructing a regional desalination treatment plant. This sub-project involves the cost to coordinate a regional study, led by the District, which would investigate potential sites for a desalination plant and expected costs and yields.
D. Recycled Water Enhancements and Improvements
The District has a partnership with the City of Pacifica to utilize recycled water from Pacifica’s Calera Creek Recycling Plant & Collection System. The District receives recycled water from the plant and has constructed a recycled water pipeline and storage tank to supply recycled water to some District customers.
The District plans to expand recycled water use in its southern service area. Recently, the District made improvements to the Calera Creek plant, including adding pumps and valves. The next phase of recycled water expansion is to convert more potable customers to recycled water. The District is considering the potential for new recycled water service for the following locations:
· Terra Nova High School
· Ortega Elementary School
· Alma Heights School
· Oddstad Soccer Fields
An additional component of the District’s Recycled Water Enhancement and Improvements sub-project is collaboration with the SFPUC to increase recycled water use for the Sharp Park Golf Course.
Scalability: Projects A and D are highly scalable pending funding availability. These projects can be done in phases to address the highest priority pipelines/customers in earlier phases.
Without implementation of these projects, the District will be primarily reliant upon the SFPUC for its entire water supply. The District receives this water through a pipeline aligned along the San Andreas Fault, making this supply vulnerable to seismic activity. Though the District has interties with neighboring water districts, these districts are also primarily dependent upon the SFPUC for their water supply. Having a diversified, local supply of water would improve emergency scenarios.
If future drought conditions persist and worsen, without this Plan, the District would have few alternatives for water supply should the SFPUC’s supplies be limited. This Plan includes potential development of groundwater and desalination; without these options, the District will be primarily dependent on the SFPUC.
Without this plan, opportunities to create significant increases in conservation may be limited. Recently, the District has implemented public education programs, rebate programs, and mandatory restrictions to promote conservation. Such programs will continue in the future. However, the conservation opportunities presented in this Plan (replaced pipelines, increased recycled water usage) represent more significant strategies for improving conservation.
The District’s Plan will achieve multiple benefits. Plan sub-projects support the management strategies in both the “Water Supply and Water Quality” and “Wastewater and Recycled Water” functional areas identified in the BAIRWMP.
Water Supply Benefits: The Plan’s benefits include increased water conservation, diversification of water supply sources, improved emergency water supply reliability, reduced reliance on surface water, and reduced reliance on imported water. The sub-projects of the Plan target a reduction in potable water consumption through conservation of 10-15 million gallons per year, which could potentially be realized with pipeline replacements (sub-project A) and increased recycled water usage (sub-project D). Additional conservation of surface water resources on the order of 100 million gallons per year could potentially be realized through in-lieu use of supplemental groundwater supplies (sub-project B) and desalination (sub-project C). Preliminary estimates for the total potential water savings represent about 10% of the District’s average annual water demand.
Resource Stewardship Benefits: Development of alternative water supply sources (groundwater, desalination) would reduce demands on surface water resources, potentially benefitting stream habitat quality.
Other: These projects are also collectively anticipated to reduce District staff time and resources used to repair pipelines; reduce demand on the SFPUC water supplies; and reduce costs to the District to purchase water from the SFPUC.
Benefit/Cost Ratio: The District estimates a benefit/cost ratio of 1.1 or better is achievable over the life of the sub-projects. A more rigorous benefit/cost analysis may be provided should the District be invited to move forward in the Bay Area IRWMP process.