To ensure ample source water for all of Monterey One Water’s Water Projects, four types of wastewater are connected to the regional sewer system. The connection of sources two through four below were made possible through the construction of the Pure Water Monterey Project. In addition to benefitting reuse, the collection of these sources prevents the polluted waters from re-entering the environment without treatment.
1) Municipal Wastewater
Indoor water usage from Monterey One Water’s 250,000 residents and almost 7,000 businesses drains into its regional sewer system where it is conveyed to its Regional Treatment Plant north of the city of Marina.
2) Industrial Processing Water
When you purchase ready-to-eat salad mixes and veggies at the grocery store, the produce was washed prior to packaging in large industrial processing facilities. When additional source water is needed to meet water recycling demands, this wash water can be diverted to the Monterey One Water Regional Treatment Plant. When not collected for reuse, this water is aerated before evaporating into the air or percolating into the ground.
3) Crop Drainage Water
The Reclamation Ditch and the Blanco Drain, both located in the Salinas Valley, collect polluted waters generated from neighboring agriculture fields. Excess water from the irrigation fields drain into these waterways. When additional source water is needed to meet water recycling demands, this drainage water can be diverted to the Monterey One Water Regional Treatment Plant. When not collected for reuse, the polluted waters flow to the Salinas River and into the Monterey Bay without treatment.
4) Urban Stormwater Runoff
When it rains or excess outdoor water usage makes it to the street, the runoff flows into the storm drain system. In our region, the storm drain system and the sewer system do not connect. For cities along the Monterey Peninsula, the storm drain system flows directly to the Monterey Bay without treatment, making it critical community members follow guidelines for outdoor water usage. Learn more through the Monterey Stormwater Education and Alliance website coordinated by the Monterey Regional Stormwater Management Program. In the city of Salinas, the storm drain system flows untreated to its creeks, the Reclamation Ditch, or the Salinas River—all of this water eventually drains into the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. When additional source water is needed to meet water recycling demands, the runoff can be diverted to the Monterey One Water Regional Treatment Plant.