Cambria prepares to throw the switch on emergency water project

Jan 19, 2015

Cambria’s emergency water project involves treating groundwater and wastewater, before pumping it back into aquifers.
Credit Jason Lopez

A milestone event in the Village of Cambria's ongoing water saga is scheduled to take place Tuesday afternoon when the emergency water project begins pumping into the local aquifer, as designed.

The system works by drawing up groundwater that is not potable because of seawater intrusion and treated effluent. That water is then filtered and pumped back into the ground.

The system has been in test mode since November and was originally slated to switch into operational mode last month.

Cambria Community Services District spokesperson Tom Gray says paperwork was the main reason for the hold up.

"These things took a little more time than expected," said Gray. "There wasn't any issue of the actual performance of the plant because we had been commissioning it on schedule and it's been operating in test mode as we expected, but to get to the point were we could actually go into production was prolonged, because of the, mostly regulatory requirements."

The plan is to run the system four days a week, ten hours a day for up to three months. Then, at some point this spring, it will likely be taken off line until it's required again based on the needs of the district this summer.