Water Project

San Luis Reservoir

Intelligent Water REuse Initiative

Project: Intelligent Water REuse Initiative

The problem

With climate change we face hotter, drier weather making current water sources unpredictable in the future. In addition, the Bay Area’s rapidly growing population is making greater demands on our water supply, of which two thirds of this supply is imported. All these factors combine to threaten our water resilience and the quality of life in the Bay Area.

The opportunity

SSV encourages the optimization of our water resources to increase our water supply so there is enough water for everyone — residents, businesses, and natural habitats.

One largely untapped water resource is treated wastewater. Today, we reuse only a small percentage of treated wastewater,  releasing most of this resource into our waterways and the Bay. Yet, wastewater can be treated centrally and onsite, greatly increasing our water supply. On-site wastewater can be treated safely and economically for non-potable uses such as irrigation, toilet flushing, and cooling tower blow-down. SSV educates and facilitates the implementation of onsite reuse, part of the solution for water resilience.

Imagine if we better managed all sources of water by encouraging increased conservation, storm-water capture, groundwater management, central recycling, and onsite reuse. We would not only maintain our high quality of life, but also support smart growth and be a model for other communities.

Part of the Solution: Encourage onsite reuse

SSV is taking a multi-pronged approach to encouraging onsite reuse:

  • Educate and  organize events for stakeholders, policy makers and students
  • Encourage ordinances and policy which enable reuse
  • Facilitate pilot projects with companies, cities, counties, research institutions, and nonprofit organizations.
  • SSV facilities and participates in a wide range of water education activities for professionals, water experts, stakeholders, policy makers and students.  The most prominent is our annual Water Symposium which is open to the public. This is an opportunity for water technology experts to connect with key government, water agency, and corporate leaders. Each symposium has a unique theme and showcases a range of design and technology systems for treating, monitoring, and reusing water in commercial and multifamily buildings.
  • SSV is working with the West Valley-Mission Community College District to develop an elementary school educational program so our residents learn, at a very young age, about our water supply and the importance of using it wisely.
  • SSV curates educational invite-only events, organizes tours for SSV members, and participates in other organizations’ water related events, such as CWEA and SVES.

Click the link below for details:

SSV’s Onsite Water Reuse Casestudies Data Base


  • A member of Santa Clara Valley Water District’s New Development Water Efficiency Task Force, developing  a model ordinance that goes further than California standards, looking at gray water, rainwater capture, onsite reuse and hot water recirculation pumps.
    Draft Model Ordinance we will be discussing at the Workshop
  • Meets with Supervisors, Councilmembers and Mayors to  gather support for SSV’s water goals and projects.
  • Supports local measures, like measure AA, which encourages safe and clean water for the Bay Area.


AB2022 Gordon (D-24): Advanced purified demonstration water

SB814 Hill (D-13): Fines for residential excessive water users

Newsha Ajami, PhD

Newsha Ajami, PhD

Director of Urban Water Policy | Water in the West, Stanford University
Josiah Cain

Josiah Cain

Director of Innovation, Sherwood Design Engineers
Bob Hitchner

Bob Hitchner

Chief Sales & Marketing Officer, Nexus eWater Inc.
Sebastien Tilmans

Sebastien Tilmans

Director of Operations, Codiga Resource Recovery Center at Stanford University