West Basin’s Edward C. Little Water Recycling Facility in El Segundo, CA will be undergoing its fourth expansion since its original construction in 1995. The facility which currently produces 30 million gallons per day (MGD) is being expanded by an additional 16 MGD.
Under the expansion, water purification facilities will be expanded to produce an additional 5 MGD of water supplied to the seawater barrier to prevent seawater intrusion and refill groundwater supplies. Other work includes an ozone pre-treatment facility, irrigation water facilities, and various solids handling facilities. The project work will cost about $60,000,000.
Recycled water brings sustainable, locally-produced water supplies to the region, making water supplies more reliable. Taking additional treated sewer water that would otherwise be discharged into the ocean will allow West Basin to help keep, on average, 50 million gallons of wastewater out of Santa Monica Bay, every day.
Cryptosporidium has not been detected in Milwaukee’s drinking water coming out of the Linnwood treatment plant on the Lake Michigan shore since 2002 or the Howard Ave. plant on the south side since 1999.
Cryptosporidium and Milwaukee made national news 18 years ago this month when the parasite caused the largest epidemic of documented waterborne disease in U.S. history. About 403,000 people in the metropolitan area were sickened with watery diarrhea, and the illness was responsible for at least 69 deaths.
The city spent $89 million from 1994 to 1998 to upgrade the two water filtration plants and prevent another outbreak. The city is continuing to invest several million dollars a year – nearly $180 million since 1998 – to maintain its water treatment and distribution systems, and ensure the water is safe to drink.
Installing better water monitoring equipment was the first priority after the outbreak. Turbidity meters show whether particles of all kinds – parasites or soil – remain suspended in treated water. Turbidity, or cloudiness, of filtered water is measured constantly inside both plants and results are reported every 5 seconds.
The first construction project was to extend the Howard Ave. plant’s water intake pipe an additional 4,200 feet out into Lake Michigan. The longer pipe moved the intake away from the plume of contamination flowing out of the Milwaukee harbor and south along the shoreline. New filters of anthracite coal atop crushed sand, and new filter drains, were installed at both plants.
More importantly ozone gas now is dispersed into lake water as the first step of the treatment process at both plants. Ozone is capable of destroying Cryptosporidia and other disease-causing microbes. Typical doses of chlorine are not capable of killing the parasite.
Eric Johnson, Operations Supervisor for the Kingsbury General Improvement District, won the Nevada Rural Water Association’s Operator of the Year award.
This award is given to one operator in Nevada each year, honoring the dedication and expertise of water operators throughout the state of Nevada.
Kingsbury G.I.D. is the water supplier for the residents of the Stateline area, and is one of the most complex water treatment and distribution systems in Northern Nevada. The water is treated by an ozone disinfection process before being pumped over 1,500 feet vertically through a series of tanks and pumping stations to reach the customers’ homes on upper Kingsbury.
The award reflects the quality of service and commitment given by Eric and the rest of the KGID staff and crew to the residents of the Kingsbury area.