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RSVP Today for SCWC’s Water Use Efficiency Workshop!

July 8, 2015
RSVP Today for SCWC’s Water Use Efficiency Workshop!
July 8, 2015

RSVP today for SCWC’s upcoming Water Use Efficiency Workshop, which will be held at the Metropolitan Water District on August 12. The event is generously sponsored by MWD and will focus on permanent outdoor conservation strategies that are “California friendly” and will result in significant reductions in water use. 

Metropolitan Water District of Southern California

700 N. Alameda Street Los Angeles, CA 90012

9:00am – 3:00pm

Cost: FREE

*Lunch will be provided

RSVP by contacting Ashley Cohen at 818.760.2121 or  


Click here to download the event flyer.


State Releases Revised California WaterFix Proposal

The California Department of Water Resources and Bureau of Reclamation released a joint Partially Recirculated Draft Environmental Impact Report/Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the governor’s California WaterFix plan to modernize water infrastructure in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta.

SCWC Executive Director Rich Atwater commented on the release: 

“Today’s release marks an important milepost for advancing this crucial plan. Given the ever-present threat of seismic disaster on our horizon, it is imperative that we act now to secure our statewide water supply. Millions of people in Southern California depend on fresh water that moves through the Delta. California WaterFix proposes a modern, new system capable of protecting one of our most important water sources.”

Californians for Water Security also issued a press release expressing strong support for the project, including numerous voices from their statewide coalition.

For more on the plan and revised proposal, visit


SCWC Hosts 4th Annual Stormwater Workshop

SCWC recently hosted its 4th annual Stormwater Workshop at the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, where cities, water agencies, regulators and regional leaders gathered to discuss the potential that stormwater capture and integrated regional water management has to expand local water supplies and help reduce reliance on imported water during the state’s ongoing drought.

“Southern California has long been a national leader in water efficiency, breaking ground on innovative water projects that allow us to capture and store stormwater while also tapping into new supplies through groundwater clean-up. These techniques will help drought-proof the region for years to come,” said Richard Atwater, Executive Director of SCWC.

The workshop featured panel discussions that examined various cutting edge projects underway to enhance local water supplies during the drought. One panel showcased the Santa Ana River Conservation & Conjunctive Use Program, a collaborative effort between Eastern Municipal Water District, Inland Empire Utilities Agency, Orange County Water District, San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District, and Western Municipal Water District. Together, these agencies have taken regional cooperation to the next level, launching a 2,464-square-mile, watershed-wide, multi-benefit project that will reduce costs and augment water storage for future generations.

Numerous other agencies throughout Southern California have also been making great strides in improving stormwater capture, as well as augmenting underground and surface storage capacity. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works had completed 22 projects since 2007 that have increased stormwater capture capacity by 2,200 acre-feet and have conserved enough water on average to supply 40,000 households for one year. Calleguas Municipal Water District has made significant investments to facilitate construction of desalters to pump brackish groundwater, which has filled groundwater basins. The desalters are expected to produce over 50,000 acre-feet per year of local water supplies and create space in shallow aquifers to capture approximately 10,000 acre-feet of stormwater each year in Eastern Ventura County.

“The collaboration we have seen from Southern California’s water agencies in developing initiatives that augment the amount of water we are able to capture and store is truly extraordinary, and this workshop gives water agencies across the region models for improving our water management,” said Mark Pestrella, Chairman of SCWC’s Stormwater Task Force and Chief Deputy Director of Los Angeles County Department of Public Works.

For more on the workshop, visit SCWC’s website.


SCWC is Hiring!

SCWC is seeking a part-time membership and events coordinator with experience in event planning and administration. To learn more about the position, including how to apply, click here.


SCWC’s Legislative Task Force Adopts Support for 7 Bills

SCWC’s Legislative Task Force elected to formally support six pieces of statewide water legislation, submitting support letters for these bills.

The bills supported were AB 1 (Brown), AB 291 (Medina), AB 349 (Gonzalez), AB 606 (Levine), AB 1201 (Salas), SB 385 (Hueso), and SB 485 (Hernandez). The bills aim to address a range of water supply challenges the state currently faces, including promoting water conservation, addressing stormwater management, adopting a science-based approach, and managing environmental stressors in the Delta.


Learn more about SCWC’s Legislative Task Force here.


KCET: California’s Agriculture Makes a Bigger Impact on the Economy Than You Think
A new study, entitled The Economic Impact of Food and Beverage Processing in California, shows the enormous impact that California’s agricultural industry has on the state’s economy. The study shows that California’s food and beverage products create jobs and economic output beyond basic agricultural production alone. 

“We took the primary impacts, which are available publicly, and then used a well-known input/output model called IMPLANT,” said Richard Sexton, an Agricultural and Resource Economics professor at UC Davis and one of the study’s authors. “The idea is that we want to determine how those impacts diffuse as they work their way through the economy.” 

KCET notes “if you’re processing milk — dairy is California’s largest agricultural industry — you’re not just going to lose the $3.37 billion from dairy sales.”

According to the report: “[T]he total economic impact of dairy processing in California is $15.6 billion. We estimate that the dairy sector directly accounts for 18,000 jobs, and that another nearly 122,000 jobs are generated from the indirect and induced impacts, resulting in over 139,000 California jobs that can be traced directly or indirectly to the dairy processing sector.”

Read more on the study at


In the News: Stormwater Capture

Here’s a quick round-up of some pertinent pieces on water that have been circulating in the news recently:

Capital Public Radio (June 23): Stormwater Capture: California’s Untapped Supply

“Colorful drought tolerant plants line the sidewalks of Elmer Avenue. But it isn’t just pretty landscaping. These are bioswales – “ditches” – engineered to slow down water so it soaks into the ground to mimic a natural landscape… 

“Permeable driveways also help sponge up water. [Ecologist] Chris Solek says in two years, the street was able to capture enough water to supply up to 66 households daily. That’s 32 acre feet. The Elmer Avenue pilot project helped spark a similar project just a few miles away.”

Los Angeles Times (June 17): L.A. County’s plan to capture stormwater could be state model

“Amid a worsening drought, California water officials adopted new rules Tuesday aimed at capturing and reusing huge amounts of stormwater that have until now flowed down sewers and concrete rivers into the sea…

“But only recently has California considered capturing this water as a way of augmenting its dwindling water reserves. The plan approved by the State Water Resources Control Board applies to Los Angeles County but is seen as a model for other parts of water-starved California.”


Established in 1984, the Southern California Water Committee is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, public education partnership dedicated to informing Southern Californians about our water needs and our state’s water resources. Spanning Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, San Bernardino, Imperial, Riverside, Ventura and Kern Counties, the SCWC’s members include representatives from business, government, labor, agriculture, water agencies and the general public.

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