The San Diego County Water Authority is dependent upon water delivery from the Metropolitan Water District for water that originates from two sources: the State Water Project and the Colorado River.
True. MWD obtains its water from two sources: the Colorado River and the State Water Project. The extent to which MWD’s member agencies rely upon MWD supplies varies. The ability of MWD to provide supplies in a given year may depend upon the extent to which member agencies exercise their respective preferential rights to purchase water.
Water headed south from the Delta has been flowing since the 1950’s and will always be available.
False. It has been flowing since the 1950’s, but the Delta (covering nearly 700,000 acres) has 1,115 miles of levees to separate the fresh water from salt water. A single seismic event, long predicted by seismologists, will destroy the levees and the State Water Project.
The “Delta” is the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta that supplies fresh water from high in the Sierras to the State Water Project.
Both the Colorado River and the State Water Project total carry about the same quantity of water.
The California or State Water Project is a 443 mile-long canal that carries water from Northern California to Southern California.
San Diego’s allocation of Colorado River water is the result of the Colorado River Compact which splits the flow among seven user states.
True. That compact was signed in 1922. San Diego is the recipient of a portion of the 4.4 million acre feet allocated to California in the Compact. A set of agreements on how to divide the state’s share of Colorado River water, called the Quantification Settlement Agreement (QSA) was signed in 2003 and challenged in court. Sacramento Superior Court Judge Lloyd Connelly ruled June 4, 2013 that authorities properly weighed the environmental impact of the landmark 2003 agreement. The centerpiece calls for the Imperial Valley to transfer water to San Diego. [see end note 27 in Water Shock] .
Colorado River water consumed yearly for agriculture and by the 30 million Westerners who rely on it now exceeds the total annual flow.
Imperial Valley agribusiness pays about the same price for water as does a residential user in the San Diego area
False. Farmers, mainly agribusiness corporate entities pay a fraction of the cost of water that a San Diego area residential customer pays.
Having come from the snow melt high in the Rocky Mountains, Colorado River water is pure and fresh.
Recycled water from sewage treatment plants has been used for irrigation, but is not safe for human consumption.
False. In 2009, the City of San Diego embarked on a demonstration project to examine the use of advanced water purification technology to provide safe and reliable water for San Diego’s future. The Water Purification Demonstration Project (PDF) has evaluated the feasibility of a full-scale reservoir augmentation project, which would diversify San Diego’s water supply, reduce its dependence on imported water and provide a reliable, local drinking water supply for residents, and found it to be safe.