CARSON, CA, Feb. 11, 2010 -- The West Basin Municipal Water District (West Basin) Board of Directors has voted to support the Safe, Clean, and Reliable Drinking Water Supply Act of 2010 (Water Supply Act). The Water Supply Act will provide $11.14 billion in bond funding to improve California's aging infrastructure, invest in watershed planning and new water supply projects, and protect the fragile Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay Delta (Bay Delta) environment. Without action, today's statewide water crisis will get much worse.
"We're facing increasing water supply challenges and scarcity that need to be addressed today to avoid more serious problems for our children and grandchildren," said West Basin Board President Gloria D. Gray. "An investment in California's water infrastructure is required to make our water supply more reliable in the future."
The current water crisis stems from complex and long-standing issues. Built 40 to 50 years ago to serve 18 million people, California's water delivery infrastructure currently serves 37 million. The Colorado River ecosystem has suffered several years of drought and is supplying water to more and more people in rapidly growing cities throughout the Southwest. The Bay Delta is at the center of the State's water delivery system and is threatened by earthquakes and significant ecosystem problems, including declining sensitive fish species requiring protection.
Water in California has been cut back by as much as 30% due to court decisions intended to protect the declining Delta smelt, affecting residents throughout the state, including the San Francisco Bay Area, Central Coast, San Joaquin Valley and Southern California. Agriculture in the Central Valley has declined, with unemployment escalating, all due to a lack of water.
West Basin's support of the Water Supply Act furthers its Water Reliability 2020 goals to reduce the region's dependence on imported water by expanding locally-produced supplies in water recycling, conservation and ocean-water desalination.
West Basin Municipal Water District is reducing its dependence on imported water through the Water Reliability 2020 program that will double conservation, double recycled water production and add desalted ocean-water to our portfolio by the year 2020. Partnering with community organizations, businesses and other public agencies keeps West Basin lean and strengthens its programs. West Basin is a wholesale water district that serves nearly a million people in 17 cities and unincorporated areas throughout its 185-square mile service area.