Water Storage In California
During California’s most recent drought, voters sought to increase the amount of water storage capability that the state had at its disposal. This led to the passing of Proposition 1 back in 2014. The $7.5 billion bond contained $2.7 billion that was set aside for new infrastructure that would help store water for future droughts.
The application deadline for water agencies was August 14th and there were 12 projects that were submitted for consideration to the California Water Commission (Commission). The Commission will have until June of 2018 to decide which projects get funded.
These proposed projects range from expanding existing reservoirs, increasing the amount of underground storage, investing in new purification techniques for wastewater and even constructing new dams.
The money set aside for these new projects by Proposition 1 will be distributed once the Commission decides on the projects that are most feasible. The State’s money will cover up to 50 percent of the project’s costs, which means that these agencies will still have to find additional sources of funding to build their proposed projects. One source of potential funding could be increasing water rates for their customers.
This month’s application deadline was an important step in the process of creating new water storage options for California. Once the Commission decides which projects will receive funding, those agencies will still be responsible for years of fundraising and research before breaking ground.