Facilities

The California State Water Project (SWP) supplies water to an almost 27 million Californians and 750,000 acres of farmland. It spans more than 705 miles from Northern California to Southern California and includes 36 storage facilities, 21 pumping plants, five hydroelectric power plants, four pumping-generating plants, and approximately 700 miles of canals, tunnels, and pipelines.

ca aqueduct

A spring evening over the California Aqueduct in the San Joaquin Valley.

The California Aqueduct is the primary method of transporting water from Northern California to Southern California. The concrete-lined canal winds its way through the Central Valley, moving water from the Clifton Court Forebay in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta down to Lake Perris, the SWP’s southernmost reservoir. Water travels by gravity until it is lifted by pumping plants and then continues its journey south by gravity until the next pumping plant. 

At the Tehachapi Mountains, water is lifted 1,926 feet by fourteen 80,000 horsepower pumps at Edmonston Pumping Plant. The Edmonston Pumping Plant is the highest single-lift pumping plant in the world. From the Tehachapi crossing, water flows into Antelope Valley, where the aqueduct divides into the West Branch and East Branch of the Aqueduct.
 

Castaic Lake and Dam, part of the State Water Project. DWR/2014

swp_powerplants
swp pumping plants map
 

The San Luis Reservoir reached 98 percent of total capacity and 110 percent of historical average in Mach 2017. DWR/2017

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