The purification center produces up to 8 million gal per day of clean water
On Monday, Sept. 8, 2014 the Santa Clara Valley Water District in San José, Calif., received the “Project of the Year Award – Large” from the WateReuse Assn. at its annual national symposium in Dallas.
According to the association, the Project of the Year Award recognizes projects whose significance and contributions to the community continue to advance the water reuse industry. In its award letter, the association wrote that “Santa Clara Valley Water District has demonstrated continued dedication to the water reuse community, and the WateReuse Assn. gratefully acknowledges the contributions you have made.”
The association’s award recognizes the completion of the water district’s new water recycling facility, the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center. Located in northern San José off Zanker Road, the facility produces up to 8 million gal per day of highly purified water. It is the largest facility of its kind in Northern California.
The new facility uses three advanced technologies to purify water that has already undergone two levels of quality wastewater treatment, sourced from the San José-Santa Clara Regional Wastewater Facility. At the new purification center, the water goes through microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet light to produce water that is so pure, it is expected to match drinking water quality.
Instead of going to the bay, this water is distributed via the regional “purple pipe” recycled water system, delivered by South Bay Water Recycling (SBWR), and used for industrial cooling towers, golf courses and car washes, throughout San José, Milpitas and Santa Clara. Approximately 750 customers of the SBWR program are now enjoying the enhanced recycled water, which has a lower level of total dissolved solids. This helps reduce chemical use and maintenance costs for industrial users, and is easier on some plant species because it reduces salt buildup.
In addition, the facility is helping to raise awareness and support for advanced treatments that render water of such a high quality that it can be used for additional purposes, including future drinking water supplies.
Today, recycled water meets about 5% of the county’s total water demands. By 2025, the water district hopes to double that number. The new purification center is one important step to reaching that goal.