Press Release: Sites Reservoir Awarded Additional $80 Million in Federal Funds to Increase Drought Resilience
Sites Reservoir Awarded Additional $80 Million in Federal Funds
to Increase Drought Resilience
Sacramento, CA – Last week, the Sites Reservoir project was awarded $80 million in federal funding from the Bureau of Reclamation via the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act (WIIN Act), which provides grants for water supply infrastructure that promotes drought resilience for rural communities and agriculture, urban areas, public health and the environment.
“Thanks to the continued support of our federal elected officials and Commissioner Touton, we are maintaining momentum on Sites Reservoir and advancing critical project milestones,” said Fritz Durst, chairman of the Sites Project Authority. “Sites will help ensure California has a reliable water supply in the face of prolonged drought uncertainty.”
This fall, Sites Reservoir was awarded $30 million in funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which became law in November of last year. The project has now received over $214 million in federal funding through the Bureau of Reclamation. The Sites Project Authority was also invited to apply for a $2.2 billion low interest loan through the Environmental Protection Agency’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program earlier this year. These investments and opportunities represent a significant cost savings for project participants.
Sites Reservoir will increase California’s water supply by providing 1.5 million acre-feet of additional water storage capacity, which will make our statewide water management system more flexible, reliable, and resilient. Specifically, Sites can provide water during drought years by saving it when it’s abundant from wet years and major storm events.
“It’s time we manage water differently in California. More of the same will not provide relief from severe drought— but Sites Reservoir is a new source of drought year water that will provide tangible benefits to California’s environment, people and farms,” added Durst.
Sites Reservoir is an off-stream reservoir that will capture and store excess stormwater from the Sacramento River – after all other water rights and regulatory requirements are met – and release water to California communities, farms, business, and wildlife during drier years. Sites Reservoir has broad statewide support from cities, counties, water agencies, and irrigation districts throughout the Sacramento Valley, San Joaquin Valley, Bay Area, and Southern California which are working together to advance the project. The Sites Reservoir Project is locally led by the Sites Project Authority which is made up Sacramento Valley water districts, cities, and counties.
Sites is an off-stream reservoir proposed north of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, where it would provide unique water supply and environmental benefits during dry periods, especially during extended drought. Additional information can be found at www.sitesproject.org or on Facebook and Twitter at @SitesProject.