State Water Project

A drone provides a view of a section of the California Aqueduct within the California State Water Project, located near John R. Teerink Pumping Plant, which convey California Aqueduct water between Buena Vista and John R. Teerink Pumping Plants within Kern County.

A drone provides a view of a section of the California Aqueduct within the California State Water Project, located near John R. Teerink Pumping Plant.

The California State Water Project (SWP) is a multi-purpose water storage and delivery system that extends more than 705 miles -- two-thirds the length of California. A collection of canals, pipelines, reservoirs, and hydroelectric power facilities delivers clean water to 27 million Californians, 750,000 acres of farmland, and businesses throughout our state.

Planned, built, operated and maintained by DWR, the SWP is the nation’s largest state-owned water and power generator and user-financed water system. The project is considered an engineering marvel that has helped fuel California’s population boom and economic prosperity since its initial construction.

For the last 20 years, the California State Water Project’s average water is 34 percent for agricultural and 66 percent for residential, municipal, and industrial.

The State Water Project also plays an important role in efforts to combat climate change. Not only does it help California manage its water supply during extremes such as flooding and drought, it is also a major source of hydroelectric power deliveries for the State's power grid.

Benefits of the SWP

The primary purpose of the SWP is water supply delivery and flood control, but it provides many additional benefits, including:

  • Power generation
  • Recreation activities
  • Environmental stewardship

Planning for the Future

Now and in the future, the State Water Project will maintain its pivotal role in managing California’s water resources as we adapt to climate change. As California’s water landscape is changing, introducing new challenges, technologies, and possibilities, the SWP is dedicated in its commitment to the vision of being the most reliable, sustainable, and affordable water provider for the people and environment of California. In pursuit of this vision, the SWP has developed a risk-informed strategic approach known as “Elevate to ‘28” aimed at ensuring reliable water for the people and environment of California through 2028 and beyond. Elevate to ’28 delineates specific actions that the SWP will implement to address future challenges to secure a better future for California.

The State Water Project’s first comprehensive public facing Long-term Drought Plan is part of an expanded effort to prepare for future droughts and extreme dry conditions. Specifically, the Long-term Drought Plan includes an assessment of the potential impacts of drought on the State Water Project, including the possibility that California’s shift to a hotter, drier future may result in more severe droughts. The plan also highlights information and actions taken by the State Water Project during previous droughts, outlining how they have informed current operations and highlighting actions taken by the State Water Project to prepare for future droughts.


Note: The first map below shows State Water Project contractors, reservoirs, conveyance systems, and power generation and pumping plants. Use your mouse to hover or click on designated locations or icons for additional details. You can also use the legends on the right side or bottom of the maps for navigating to specific locations. Zoom in to see labels and navigation points more clearly.
The map below shows reservoir storage and aqueduct flow data for the California State Water Project. All data used for this map comes from the California Data Exchange Center and should be considered preliminary data and subject to change. Please email if you have any questions regarding this data.
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