Water and Wastewater Utilities - Water Sources
Where Does My Water Come From?
The city has five sources of water: Salt River Project, Central Arizona Water Conservation District, groundwater, effluent/reclaimed water and stored water credits.
Salt River Project (SRP): SRP surface water supply comes from the Salt and Verde River systems. The water from the Salt and Verde rivers originates from the springtime melt of the snow pack and from monsoon rains originating in northeastern and central Arizona. This water is stored in a series of reservoirs and is delivered to the city’s treatment plant via the Salt River Project’s canal system. Water supplies received from Salt River Project can only be used on lands within the Project’s service area boundaries.
Central Arizona Water Conservation District: The city is entitled to several sources of Colorado River water delivered by the Central Arizona Water Conservation District, of which the largest supply is Central Arizona Project water. During normal, non-drought years, the city would be entitled to receive a total of 22,732 acre-feet from the Colorado River.
City Groundwater: Groundwater availability is not typically affected by drought. Glendale has the right to utilize a limited amount of groundwater, which is pumped from wells connected to either a treatment facility or directly to the city’s water system. The city received a one-time volume of 294,300 acre-feet of groundwater that could be used over a 100-year period starting in 1998 (some of this groundwater has already been used). This limited amount of groundwater may be pumped out of the aquifer without being replenished. In addition to groundwater, the city receives an annual credit for incidental recharge equal to 4.69 percent of total water demand.
Effluent/Reclaimed Water: The newest type of water developed by Glendale is effluent/reclaimed water. Reclaimed water is water previously used that has gone through the wastewater treatment process and is made safe to use again. Reclaimed water is being used directly on landscaping (such as at Arrowhead Ranch) and being stored in the aquifer.
Direct use of reclaimed water benefits the city by fulfilling a water demand that would otherwise be met using potable water. The normal rate of direct use of reclaimed water is usually needed even during droughts because of the lack of underground aquifer storage facilities.
Other Stored Water Credits: The city also acquires stored water credits through various groundwater recharge facilities, and by extinguishing old groundwater rights. The city has recharged more than 101,000 acre-feet of water underground for future use. Additionally, the city has developed more than 44,000 acre-feet of stored water credits by extinguishing agricultural groundwater irrigation rights as those lands urbanize. These credits are one-time credits that are not subject to droughts. Stored water credits can be recovered through wells.