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Long Beach Recycled Water System Expansion

The Long Beach Water Department remains committed to developing alternative sources of water to supplement precious imported potable water to meet the annual water demands our customers, particularly those using potable water primarily for industrial and irrigation operations.

In an effort to reduce our need to purchase increasingly expensive imported potable water and to further diversify the City's water supply reliability portfolio, the Long Beach Water Department is involved in one of the most aggressive recycled water system expansions found anywhere in Southern California.

The Recycled Water System Expansion Project is being developed in four critical and very deliberate phases, and is primarily intended to connect the recycled water system to new customers, as well as increase the reliability of the distribution system through the completion of looped transmission corridors.  The primary elements of the project include the construction of 16 miles of pipeline, new pump stations, augmentation of water system storage, and the completion of new service connections.

A descriptive map of the recycled water system and its phases can be seen here:

Recycled Water System and Phases

When complete, this project will more than double recycled water use in Long Beach from 4,000 acre-feet to 9,000 acre-feet annually, eventually meeting 15 percent of the city's total water demand.  The city's recycled water system will stretch from the East Side of the City to the west, including a connection to Terminal Island.  One acre-foot is approximately 326,000 gallons.

Highlights of Phase 1 of this project include connections to customers with large irrigation operations like California State University Long Beach and the Long Beach Unified School District, in addition to several large parks, golf courses, cemeteries and athletic fields.

The City’s street sweepers will also begin to fulfill some of their water demands using recycled water in place of potable water.  This has the potential to save millions of gallons of water annually.

More Information

Phase 1

This phase of the expansion project also allows THUMS, a collection of oil companies operating offshore drilling platforms in Long Beach Harbor, to use 1,100 acre-feet of recycled water to re-pressurize oil-bearing strata, saving an equal amount of imported potable water in the process.

Another critical part of Phase 1 is the Leo Vander Lans Treatment Facility that allows the utilization of 3,000 acre-feet of highly treated recycled water, in part, for groundwater recharge to protect against seawater intrusion.

Phase 2

This phase of the project will see, among other events, the connection of two large power generation facilities, in the southeast part of the City, operated by the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and AES Southland Company.  These connections will enable these facilities to use recycled water for industrial operations, saving nearly 570 acre-feet of potable water annually.

Phases 3 and 4

These phases will see the city's recycled water system expanded to the west connecting to large industrial users in the Port of Long Beach.