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In considering San Diego’s long-range water resources planning, ensuring a reliable water source is essential. Due to limited local water supplies, the City of San Diego is exploring water purification as a potential water supply for San Diego. At the City’s Advanced Water Purification (AWP) Facility, recycled water is purified using microfiltration/ultrafiltration, reverse osmosis, and advanced oxidation with ultraviolet light and hydrogen peroxide. While water purification is a proven technology in some areas, California lacks regulations for certain water purification scenarios. Water purification is part of the City of San Diego’s water resources strategy, as established in the Long-Range Water Resources Plan (2002-2030), that includes planning, conservation, recycled water, water reuse, and watershed resource protection to help meet future water needs.

Guests will learn about San Diego’s water supply source and challenges, the science of water purification, and how it can provide a reliable drinking water supply for the San Diego community. Guests will then take a guided walking tour through the AWP Facility, where they will see the equipment up close and will view the resulting purified water. Guests will also view a video of the Orange County Groundwater Replenishment System’s water purification process that is currently in operation. Following the tour, a panel of experts will answer questions from the audience on technical, regulatory, policy and outreach issues associated with the City’s water purification efforts. This conversation will delve into more detail on the safety of the purified water and constituent removal, how San Diego is leading the way in developing a regulatory pathway and necessary policy for water purification scenarios, how public outreach has played a key role in gaining public acceptance, and potential planning, environmental and economic benefits and impacts of a successful program.  Additional information on Pure Water San Diego is available at: www.purewatersd.org.

Lunch will be provided and registration will begin at 11:00 am. 

Please arrive early so we can get started promptly at 11:30 am.    


2 CM Credits


The Advanced Water Purification Facility located at the North City Water Reclamation Plant


A construction barrier with an “AWP Facility” sign is posted in front of the North City Water Reclamation Facility. A security guard will greet guests at the gate.


Limited parking is available for visitors and is located at the Advanced Water Purification Facility (there is space for approximately 30 vehicles).  Carpooling is highly encouraged.


Prior to February 19: $10 (Members), $15 (Non-Members), $5 (Students/Unemployed/Retired Members)

After February 19: $15 (Members), $20 (Non-Members), $10 (Students, Unemployed and Retired Members)

REGISTRATION REQUIRED – RSVP:  http://tinyurl.com/sdapa-march2014

Event flyer

Discussion Panelists:

William R. (Bill) Pearce, P.E., Water Research Manager, City of San Diego, Public Utilities Department

Bill Pearce has 28 years of water and wastewater engineering experience with the City of San Diego. Over the past 15 years, he has worked exclusively with applied research on advanced treatment technologies and the City’s long-range water supply planning. Bill has co-authored 12 peer-reviewed articles for professional journals. Bill is the City’s lead engineer for San Diego’s Advanced Water Purification Facility. Bill has a BS in Civil Engineering from North Carolina State University, an MS in Environmental Health Sciences from Harvard School of Public Health, and is a licensed professional engineer in the state of California.

 Cathy C. Pieroni, Principal Water Resources Specialist, City of San Diego, Public Utilities Department

For more than a decade, Cathy Pieroni has served as a principal analyst at the City of San Diego’s Public Utilities Department, specializing in matters related to imported water and the governance of the wholesale agencies that transport the imported water to San Diego.  Additionally, she heads up the Department’s analysis of legislation, regulations and external policies.  Hailing originally from upstate New York, where they sometimes get more precipitation in a week than San Diego gets in a whole year, Cathy appreciates the astounding complexity of water management in San Diego.  She applauds the engagement of the public in water, wastewater, recycled water and storm water decisions, as they are undoubtedly among the most important topics impacting San Diegans today.

Patricia Tennyson, Executive Vice-President, Katz & Associates, Inc.

Patricia Tennyson has developed and managed communication, government and community relations, and public affairs and media strategies for water and wastewater agencies including the City of San Diego Public Utilities Department, Fort Worth Water, Santa Clara Valley Water District, Honolulu Board of Water Supply, San Diego County Water Authority, West Basin Municipal Water District, El Paso Water Utilities, Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, Rancho California Water District, and Western Municipal Water District.  She has a B.A. from Southern Methodist University, an M.L.S. from Texas Women’s University and an M.P.A. from San Diego State University.  Patricia is a trustee on the American Waterworks Association’s Management and Leadership Division and former chair of the Public Affairs Council and a member of the WateReuse Association California Section board of trustees, as well as the WateReuse Research Foundation’s Research Advisory Committee.

Danielle Thorsen, Community Outreach Specialist to Pure Water San Diego will be providing support on the Tour. 

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