The City of Oceanside has been awarded a $69 million Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act loan from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The funding will be used to finance nearly half of the city’s $158 million Pure Water Oceanside project, to be completed in 2022.

The Pure Water Oceanside project will be the first operating advanced water purification facility in San Diego County. Project construction and operation are expected to create 622 jobs.

Pure Water Oceanside will purify recycled water to create a new local source of drinking water that is drought-proof and safe. The project will provide more than 32% of the City of Oceanside’s water supply, or three to five million gallons per day.

“At the City of Oceanside, we are focused not only on today, but also are committed to planning for tomorrow to ensure future generations will have access to high-quality drinking water,” said Cari Dale, Oceanside water utilities director. “This WIFIA loan will be instrumental in moving our Pure Water Oceanside project forward to completion and aligns with our long-term goal to have 50% of our city’s water supply be locally sourced by 2030. We are grateful to the U.S. EPA for partnering with us on this important project and investing in our future.”

The remaining Pure Water Oceanside project funds will come from a combination of grants, water system revenue backed obligations and system funds.

In 2019, EPA selected Pure Water Oceanside and portions of Oceanside’s recycled water upper and lower systems as one of only 38 applicants across the nation to be invited to apply for a WIFIA loan. The WIFIA program accelerates investment in the nation’s water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental loans for regionally and nationally significant projects.

Oceanside imports most of its water from the Sacramento Bay Delta and the Colorado River. This imported water is subject to rising costs, requires transportation and is vulnerable to natural disasters and earthquakes. Pure Water Oceanside will address these challenges, diversifying the city’s water supply and reducing its reliance on imported water by 45%.

Travel & Hospitality reporter Mariel Concepcion can be reached at mconcepcion@sdbj.com or 858-634-4625.