What puts our water supply
The Tri-Valley relies heavily on imported water through the California State Water Project, due to historic over pumping of the local groundwater basin. In the early 1960s, Zone 7 partnered with the State of California to receive imported water to help manage the local groundwater basin and provide critical drinking water supply. This impacts the cost of delivering our water, and leaves us vulnerable to long term reliability concerns. Our current system provides us with limited local control because so much of our water comes from outside the region.
Learn more about the obstacles and potential threats our water system faces.
After working around the clock for more than 60 years, the State Water Project infrastructure is aging and at risk of failure. Investing in our infrastructure will ensure it can continue delivering water to over 25 million Californians. The State Water Project also provides jobs in construction, maintenance and operations of our water system. Doing nothing could prove to be just as costly as investing, given the Tri-Valley relies on this infrastructure for approximately 70% of our water. Investment also puts people to work, building a stronger economy and ensures our community will continue to thrive for generations to come.
California is no stranger to drought; it is a recurring feature of our climate. Defining drought is based on impacts to water users. California is an expansive state and impacts vary with location. The severity of droughts are based on the local or regional hydrologic conditions as well as the storage and conveyance infrastructure available to that area. Water supply conditions can vary greatly, even in regions that are in close proximity simply due to the complexity of our varying water infrastructure. This can often be confusing to residents who aren’t familiar with the systems that deliver the water to their household taps.
In the Tri-Valley, we rely heavily on water imported from the Delta through the State Water Project. It is common that during dry years, the water allocated to Zone 7 is severely reduced as there is limited water available. To buffer these limited allocations in dry years, we utilize a system of surface water reservoirs, our local groundwater basin as well as groundwater banking systems in Southern California. Because we have these resources, a single dry year isn’t a drought for Tri-Valley residents because our water infrastructure and groundwater resources mitigate the impacts. However, when multiple dry years occur together, those resources begin to get stretched to their limits.
Dry years can also mean that the imported water that we rely heavily on may be unavailable or can come at a high cost.
Earthquakes are a fact of life in California. According to the United States Geological Survey, there’s a 72% chance of a 6.7 or greater magnitude earthquake occurring in the Bay Area by 2043. This level of natural disaster could cause levees in the Delta to fail, potentially crippling the State Water Project’s ability to deliver fresh water.
Chance of a 6.7+ magnitude in the Bay Area by 2043