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Recycled Water

RecycledWaterSignCloseYou may have noticed these purple signs scattered throughout some City maintained landscaping projects. These tell you where Recycled Water is being use. The Delta Diablo Sanitation District treats and supplies the recycled water.

Recycled water is a great solution to water shortages, because it saves millions of gallons of fresh water that would have been used for landscaping. That means the limited fresh, potable water supply is saved for uses like drinking, cooking, and bathing.

It’s a safe and smart way to reuse a scarce resource.

What is recycled water?

Recycled water (also sometimes called "reclaimed" water) is wastewater that has been processed through primary, secondary, and tertiary treatment for beneficial reuse following the strict standards of state and local agencies. After residents and businesses have used the municipal water supply, it flows to the DDSD treatment plant in Antioch. There it undergoes extensive cleaning through three steps, including a process that uses flocculation, filtration, and disinfection to remove bacteria and viruses from the water. Treated wastewater, including recycled water, undergoes extensive testing to ensure that it meets strict standards set by the California Department of Health Services.

Recycled water has been used for decades, throughout the U.S. and the world. It is being used for crop irrigation as well as in parks, school playing fields and other open spaces in many states including Arizona, Texas, Florida and California. In California, recycled water is used in cities like San Jose, Santa Rosa, Sunnyvale, Windsor, and Redwood City, and in Sonoma, Orange, Los Angeles, and San Diego counties.

What is it used for?

Communities use recycled water for landscape irrigation at schools, parks, median strips, large landscape areas, and golf courses. Recycled water is also used in office parks, indoor fire protection and toilet flushing in commercial buildings, fountains, and car washes.

Delta Diablo Sanitation District's Recycled Water Facility provides up to 8,600 acre feet per year of tertiary treated recycled water to two power plants and 20 acres of parks and landscaped areas. The DDSD Recycled Water Facility is one of the largest industrial recycled water projects in the State of California. Click here to visit DDSD’s webpage on Recycled Water.

City of Pittsburg Recycled Water Project

The City of Pittsburg currently uses recycled water in Central Park, Columbia Linear Park, and 8th Street Linear Park. An extension project is underway that will bring the recycled water supply to the major irrigation needs in City Park, City Hall, Stoneman North Park, and Delta View Golf Course. When completed (estimated May 2009), the project will have extended the recycled water system by almost 20,000 feet of pipeline (sometimes called a "purple pipeline"). It will save over 520 acre feet (or 170 million gallons) of potable water every year.

Map of the "Purple Pipeline" through Pittsburg

purple pipeline map 

“The Path of Recycled Water” 


This diagram is from the Sonoma County Water Agency’s website.

Is it safe?


The California Department of Health has standards for the quality and safety for recycled water.  Extensive testing is performed on recycled water to ensure water quality standards ar met, but for extra safety it is not used or intended for consumption.  To ensure that the recycled water does not mix with drinking water supplies, the recycled water system uses separate purple pipes.  

For More Information:

Click here to visit the Delta Diablo Sanitation District's Recycled Water webpage


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Last updated: 3/7/2014 9:46:03 AM