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Posted on: June 29, 2018

District Releases Draft Environmental Impact Report for the Proposed Pure Water Soquel Project

For Immediate Release

Contact: Melanie Mow Schumacher,  Special Projects-Communications Manager
Phone:  831-475-8501 x153

Soquel Creek Water District Releases Draft Environmental Impact Report for the Proposed Pure Water Soquel Project & Seeks Public Comment

Community Invited to Public Meeting on July 31

Soquel, CA (June 29, 2018) –  Soquel Creek Water District (District) is evaluating a proposed purified water project to replenish the groundwater basin and prevent seawater intrusion from moving farther inland. After four years of technical evaluation and feasibility, a Draft Environmental Impact Report (Draft EIR - SCH# 2016112045) for Pure Water Soquel: Groundwater Replenishment and Seawater Intrusion Prevention Project (proposed Project) was released for public review on Friday, June 29, 2018. The District is encouraging community members to review and comment on the Draft EIR during the 45-day comment period which will be from June 29 to August 13, 2018.

All comments on the Draft EIR must be postmarked or received via email by August 13, 2018 for consideration.

Mail written comments to:
Pure Water Soquel Project CEQA
4041 Soquel Drive
Suite A-501
Soquel, CA 95073
Email us comments

Community members are also invited to attend and participate in a public meeting on the proposed Project, featuring an open house with information stations, short presentations, and opportunities for submitting comments either orally or in writing:
Tuesday, July 31, 2018 6 to 8 pm
Twin Lakes Church, Monschke Hall
2701 Cabrillo College Drive
Aptos, CA 95003

With the Santa Cruz Mid-County Groundwater Basin in a state of critical overdraft and seawater intrusion occurring at the coastline, the District is exploring ways to protect and increase the sustainability of its groundwater supply - the only source of water for its customers. The proposed Project would address these concerns by developing a supplemental water supply through the advanced purification of treated municipal wastewater. That purified water would be recharged into the overdrafted groundwater aquifers. The Project would also promote beneficial reuse by reducing discharge of treated wastewater to the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. This type of project is currently operational or being built across the U.S. and abroad, with local examples in Southern California (Orange County, Los Angeles County), and even closer on the other side of the Bay where the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District and Monterey One Water are currently working on a similar advanced water purification project.

The Pure Water Soquel Project components under consideration include advanced water purification facilities, pump stations and pipelines, and groundwater recharge and monitoring wells. To identify and evaluate the potential environmental effects of the proposed Project, the Draft EIR includes an impact analysis based on several environmental resource areas, mitigation measures to reduce or avoid the potential environmental effects identified in the Draft EIR, and feasible alternatives to the proposed Project.

"This is a significant point in the process of addressing the critical issues of groundwater basin overdraft and seawater intrusion," said Dr. Bruce Daniels, President of the Soquel Creek Water District Board of Directors. "It's important to gain public input on the Draft EIR's scope, content, and analysis. Our community has been very concerned with the reliability of our groundwater supply and active in our evaluation of the proposed Project. We encourage people to continue their participation by reviewing the Draft EIR document, attending the public meeting, and providing thoughtful, constructive comments."

The Draft EIR is available for review online, at the libraries listed on the website, or at the Soquel Creek Water District headquarters (5180 Soquel Drive, Soquel).

About Soquel Creek Water District

The Soquel Creek Water District is a nonprofit, local government agency that provides water resource management within its service area to deliver a safe and reliable supply of high-quality water to meet present and future needs in an environmentally sensitive and economically responsible way.

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