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Local Water District Awarded $4.5 Million in Funding for Desalination Program

RK Green Studios
Eastern Municipal Water District
A photo of an Eastern Municipal Water District desalter plant.

In late January, the EMWD (Eastern Municipal Water District) was awarded nearly $4.5 million by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The funds will go towards the water district's desalination infrastructure. Kevin Pearson is a spokesperson with the EMWD. "EMWD has a portion of its service area that has a salty groundwater basin, it's naturally occurring, it has a higher salt contents than drinking water standards," said Pearson.

Pearson says the water district uses reverse osmosis to purify the water and also discussed the award's significance. The funds will go towards a study on future well sites and improvements to pipeline access.

"At the end of the day, those are costs that our customers do not have to pay for while benefiting from an increased reliability within their water supply source," said Pearson.

In total, the EMWD serves over 1 million Inland Empire customers and is currently completing work on their third Desalter plan, which is expected to open sometime this spring.

Jonathan Linden is a reporter at 91.9 KVCR in San Bernardino, California. He joined KVCR in July 2021 and had previously interned for the station in the Spring of 2019. Outside of KVCR, Jonathan also interned for KALW in San Francisco, KFI in Burbank, and Radio HCJB in Quito, Ecuador.