Our Recycled Water Program

In response to increasing demands for water, limitations on imported water supplies and the threat of drought, Central Basin Municipal Water District developed a regional water recycling program. The program is comprised of two distribution systems – the E. Thornton Ibbetson Century Water Recycling Project (Century Distribution System) and the Esteban Torres Rio Hondo Water Recycling Project (Rio Hondo Distribution System) – as well as three pumping stations, including the Rio Hondo Pump Station, Hollydale Pump Station, and Cerritos Pump Station. The Century Distribution System and Rio Hondo Distribution System are interconnected by an intricate 70-mile distribution system and operate as one recycled water supply system. The combined projects are referred to as the “Central Basin Water Recycling Project.”

In constructing the 80-mile pipeline system, Central Basin is able to distribute treated recycled water obtained through the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County. The Central Basin Water Recycling Project delivers approximately 5,000 acre-feet of recycled water annually to over 300 industrial, commercial and landscape connections. Central Basin’s use of recycled water augments the precious groundwater and imported water supplies of southeast Los Angeles County.

Central Basin promotes recycled water as an ideal alternative for business and municipal use. As the customer base continues to expand ranging from irrigation users like golf courses and parks to unconventional commercial and industrial users new benefits of recycled water continue to be discovered. For example, in the City of Pico Rivera, Smith Park utilizes recycled water to irrigate over eight acres of landscaping and turf; in total, the park uses over 6 million gallons of recycled water.  In another example, Air Products, an industrial gas company located in the City of Santa Fe Springs, uses over 73 million gallons of recycled water for its cooling tower.

Through innovative marketing, recycled water is now being used with textiles, paper production, dye houses, co-generation plants and printing. The largest recycled water user in the Central Basin area is the Malburg Power Generation Station in the city of Vernon, using more than 420 million gallons of recycled water annually. Metro State Hospital and Wheelabrator-Norwalk Energy Company, Inc. are also large recycled water users, with a combined annual use of 101 million gallons.


Are you a potential recycled water user who would benefit from our recycled water program?

Converting a portion of your potable water use to recycled water could help the State of California while it is facing harsh drought conditions.  It can also save you money on your water bill.

Examples of recycled water use include:

  • Landscape irrigation (e.g., public parks, cemeteries, golf courses);
  • Industrial processes (e.g., paper manufacturing, carpet and textile dyeing, boiler feed);
  • Commercial uses (e.g., cooling towers, toilet flushing, laundries, car washes);
  • Construction activities (e.g., dust control, soil compaction, pipeline backfill consolidation, concrete mixing);
  • Environmental uses (e.g., man-made lakes, wetlands).

There are multiple factors that are involved with determining if a site can be connected to Central Basin’s recycled water system, such as existing piping configuration and proximity to the system. If you would like to see if your site is a candidate for recycled water, please contact the Engineering & Operations Department directly:

Jacqueline Koontz
Interim Engineering & Operations Manager
(323) 201-5528