San Diego Launches Wastewater Recycling Test Project

The City of San Diego kicked off a pilot project to test the feasibility of turning wastewater into drinking water.

The city's $11.8 million Water Purification Demonstration Project will produce 1 million gallons of re-purified water per day through 2013. If the project is expanded into a full-scale treatment facility, re-purified water likely would be sent to the San Vicente Reservoir  to mix with water from other sources.

The city council approved the test project in 2007, but Sanders vetoed the plans, citing concerns over the cost of a large-scale operation and lack of public support for the concept. The council overturned Sanders’ veto, keeping the project on track.

Local public perception has actually improved over the years for recycling wastewater into drinking water. A recent countywide poll showed 67% of respondents supported the use of ultraclean recycled water in their taps, up from 63% in 2009 and 28% in 2005.

Public tours are available by calling the city utility department at (619)533-6638 or registering online.

Read more in the San Diego Union Tribune.