Orange County Districts Start Work on Expanded Purification System

Orange County water agencies broke ground Tuesday afternoon on a water purification system expansion that will bring clean water to an additional 250,000 county residents each year.

The project, a planned expansion of the Groundwater Replenishment System constructed in 2008, will provide additional microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet light treatment equipment, pumps, electrical equipment and additional post treatment systems.

A joint project of the Orange County Water District and the Orange County Sanitation District, the $142.7 million project will create an additional 31,000 acre‐feet per year of new water supplies, bringing the total production of the GWRS to 103,000 AFY. Construction is expected to be completed by fall 2014.

The largest purification facility of its kind, The GWRS takes highly treated wastewater and purifies it through a three‐step process of microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet light with hydrogen peroxide, resulting in near‐distilled quality water. It is the world’s largest advanced water purification facility of its kind, currently producing up to 70 million gallons of new water every day.  

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