By Staff Reports
High Desert Daily
(Hesperia)– The Victor Valley Wastewater Reclamation Authority continues to live up to its new slogan, Taking the Waste out of Wastewater, with a new pilot project in partnership with a fortune 200 company, exceeding expectations in what could lead the agency to operating completely off the grid.
Currently, the agency spends upwards of $1,200,000 per year on energy costs at its Victorville treatment facility, but in working with a national solid waste hauler, VVWRA is currently accepting the company’s food waste and processing it in unneeded digester capacity to produce methane that can be used to create energy and provide power to the plant.
“The results have been far greater than we could’ve imagined, and in working with our partner, it’s no wonder they were named one of the world’s most ethical companies of 2011,” said Logan Olds, General Manager of VVWRA. “They’re constantly looking for innovative ways to create a positive impact with their product.” However, that just scratches the surface of VVWRA’s growing renewable portfolio.
The Apple Valley Town Council recently approved a new water treatment facility that when built out will be able to treat and reuse up to 4 million gallons of water per day to irrigate schools, parks and the Apple Valley Golf Course. A nearly identical plant is also expected to go before the Hesperia Planning Commission in the coming weeks. Together the two plants will be able to provide eight million gallons of recycled water for irrigation needs that are now being met with precious drinking water supplies.
This significant water savings will ensure responsible growth in the High Desert for generations to come. Eight million gallons a day is equivalent to more than 24 acre-feet. An acre-foot is enough water to cover one acre, one foot deep and is typically what a family of four needs for an entire year. Currently, of the water demands for the entire Alto basin, less than one half percent is met with recycled water, and these facilities will create a significant impact for water conservation in our arid region.
The facilities will be the first of their kind and have been designed to blend beautifully with the surrounding community, while keeping the grass green using a local, drought-proof water supply. Although the prospect of purchasing Victorville’s Wastewater Treatment plant is still a possibility, no details have been released as talks are still being held in closed session. In other news, the agency’s administrative staff is slated to relocate back to the Plant from its current offices in what is the former Hesperia City Hall, and will have a brand new user-friendly website expected to go live this fall.