Project #5061

Carlsbad Desalination Integration and Regional Salinity Reduction Study

In Progress
Principal Investigator
Research Manager
Harry Zhang, PhD, PE
Water Supply Planning


This project builds on project 4773, which examined the impact of integrating seawater desalinated via reverse osmosis (SWRO) water into existing regional supplies of disparate quality. This new research evaluated the influence of an increased percent of State Project Water in imported water supplies on treated water blends with SWRO water.

This expansion has two important benefits for both local San Diego water systems specifically and the broader water treatment community, generally. First, distribution system effects that may only manifest over a longer time period can be more adequately assessed. Second, the composition of imported water supplies with which desalinated seawater was blended was more diverse and variable among the two disparate surface water sources, representing not only more typical regional blending scenarios, but also a broader set of waterquality conditions that will improve confidence in translating the findings of WRF 5061 to other seawater desalination applications.

The results of the study have been incorporated into a salinity model tool to quantify the associated benefit of reduced salinity. Research partners: San Diego County Water Authority and Southern California Salinity Coalition. Published in 2024.