As California welcomes the start of a new water year, the Department of Water Resources (DWR) joined local officials and the Los Angeles Department of Power and Water (LADWP) to celebrate two projects that will build climate resiliency in underserved communities and diversify water supplies in the region.
The projects are supported by $19.1 million in grant funding awarded through DWR’s Urban Community Drought Relief Program and are an example of DWR’s recent work to prioritize building partnerships with local partners under the Go Golden Initiative. Of the funding, $14.6 million will support a free turf replacement program that could save million gallons of water each year for LADWP customers with single-family homes in underserved areas. The program is expected to launch in 2024 and will transform local yards into beautiful, drought-tolerant gardens without placing the burden of cost onto homeowners who otherwise might not be able to afford it.
“We recognize that that the impacts of climate change are not equally carried, and that no community should be left behind in our collective efforts towards resilience,” said Kris Tjernell, DWR’s deputy director of integrated water management. “This grant funding will help accelerate and expand access to resources in communities that need them the most, and we thank LADWP for its continued commitment to that shared vision.”
The remainder of the State’s grant will go toward the construction of the Dominguez Gap Recycled Water Project in the City of Wilmington. The recycled water pipeline connection project is expected to supply LA with an additional 3.5 million gallons per day of advanced treated recycled water, enough to supply drinking water to 47,000 LA customers per year. This project is scheduled for completion at the end of 2024 and is a partnership amongst several agencies, including the LA County Public Works and the Water Replenishment District.
“This grant partnership is helping to create the transition that we need for a more adaptable Los Angeles,” said President of the Board of Water and Power Commissioners, Cynthia McClain-Hill. “This is an effort that is joined by local community-based organizations, by our City leadership, and by our Department leadership. We are committed to confronting the challenges before us— be they water or climate adaptability—together.”
The event was held at the home of LADWP customers who received a free lawn transformation in 2022 to showcase the type of drought tolerant landscaping this program will support. The event is one example of work highlighted through DWR’s new Go Golden Initiative, a partnership between the state of California and local organizations and water agencies to fund bold and innovative projects that strengthen California’s water infrastructure and resiliency. Supported by state funding, these local partnerships are advancing groundwater recharge, drought resiliency, conservation, stormwater capture, flood management, recycled water and other projects that are helping our water supply. Interested parties can stay up to date with the latest Go Golden announcements and news through DWR’s email subscription list.
For more information about upcoming grant opportunities, visit DWR’s Grants and Loans webpage.