The NVRRWP is a collaborative partnership that includes the
Cities of Modesto, Turlock, Ceres, the Del Puerto Water District, and Stanislaus County.
City of Modesto
City of Turlock
City of Ceres
Stanislaus County
Del Puerto Water District

Program Description

North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program:
A Regional Win-Win Solution for California's Water Crisis

  • The North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program (NVRRWP) is designed as a regional solution to address California's water crisis by making tertiary-treated recycled water available to the drought-impacted west side of several California counties (Stanislaus, San Joaquin, and Merced Counties) for farmland irrigation.

  • The NVRRWP could produce and deliver up to 32,900 acre-feet per year of tertiary-treated recycled water -- worth an estimated total annual economic output of $67.5 million - to the drought-impacted west side. This water can be used to irrigate food crops, public and privately owned landscaping, and for industrial uses.

  • Participants in the NVRRWP currently includes the Cities of Modesto, Ceres, Turlock, Stanislaus County, and the Del Puerto Water District on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley. Modesto and Turlock currently produce recycled water and provide wastewater treatment for communities in Stanislaus County. The Cities of Modesto and Turlock have committed funding to the NVRRWP ($32.8 million for Modesto and $38 million for Turlock's tertiary treatment and pipeline design).

  • The economic benefits of the NVRRWP are substantial. The project will provide irrigation for approximately 10,966 acres of prime agricultural land with an estimated total annual income of $29 million. The $29 million total annual income is estimated to generate an additional $67.5 million per year to the region's economy in indirect and induced impacts (this is based on an economic analysis completed by the University of the Pacific's Dr. Jeffrey Michael using the IMPLAN model). The five-year cumulative economic value to the region is expected to be $206.5 million.

  • The NVRRWP is estimated to create approximately 572 on-going jobs (this number does not include the project-related construction jobs) to an area that has a 17.2% unemployment rate.

  • The environmental benefits are also significant. The project will reduce the reliance on unsustainable area groundwater supplies south of the Delta and on pumped Delta water supplies. The NVRRWP will meet the recycled water goals and mandates of the State of California.

Based on the engineering and economic analysis that was prepared for the North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program, a phased approach is recommended.

Phase 1 would consist of: (1) upgrades to San Joaquin River diversion facilities to enable Modesto's and Turlock's recycled water to be diverted from the San Joaquin River and delivered to Del Puerto Water District via the Delta Mendota Canal, (2) construction of a pipeline distribution system for the direct delivery of recycled water to Del Puerto Water District lands, and (3) construction of the City of Turlock's Harding Drain Pipeline. These facilities would allow near and long-term delivery of recycled water for irrigation of lands in the Del Puerto Water District.

Phase 2 would include: (1) storage facilities that would provide additional recycled water for irrigation while also providing migratory bird habitat, and (2) development of stormwater and additional wastewater supplies to increase the total amount of recycled water availability.

This phased approach provides environmental and economic benefits in the near-term, while meeting long-term water supply and environmental objectives. Phase 1 could provide affordable recycled water to agricultural customers in the Del Puerto Water District as early as 2016. By implementing Phase 1 of the project, productive agricultural lands can be brought back into full production and the North Valley communities can recognize an additional $29 million in total annual income with the creation of more than 572 permanent jobs. Additional jobs associated with project construction would also be created during project implementation. Phase 2 would provide additional recycled water to DPWD lands and would demonstrate a long-term commitment to recycled water deliveries that would further support job creation and the associated economic and environmental benefits to the community.