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US city plans to build groundwater desalination plant

2 November 2012

The US city of Camarillo is planning to build a $50m groundwater desalination plant to improve water quality.

The US city of Camarillo in Ventura County, California, is planning to construct a new groundwater desalination plant in order to improve the water quality in the city and also to reduce water import.

The Camarillo Department of Public Works is planning to build a new $50m desalination plant between St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital and Lewis Road to treat salty groundwater entering the city from the Las Posas Basin.

Groundwater levels in the Las Posas Basin are rising, and the salty water is expected to overflow into the Pleasant Valley Basin and affect the water quality of wells across the city.

Camarillo public works director Tom Fox was quoted by Ventura County Star as saying that the water quality in the wells is decreasing, and the department will either have to treat the water or abandon the wells.

"If we don't do something to draw out this water source, it will continue to spill over and we'll eventually have some high groundwater problems," Fox added.

The Public Works Department has discussed the project work with the council, and an analysis of the two wells between St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital and Lewis Road was carried out to study the amount of water present in them.

The findings of the study will be presented to Fox Canyon Groundwater Management Agency, which manages both confined and unconfined aquifers in the Ventura County.

Camarillo has reserved $15m for the project and is expecting about $8m from Camrosa and Calleguas Municipal water districts. The city is also looking for state grants for the project work.

Under the project, the city also plans to build two new wells near the desalination plant and pump about 7,500 acre-feet of groundwater annually for 25 years, with a view to reducing water import.


Image: The US city of Camarillo is planning to build a $50m groundwater desalination plant to improve water quality. Photo: Neogeolegend.