Zone 7 Water awarded $959,752 federal grant to help fund PFAS treatment at Chain of Lakes Wells

News Release

LIVERMORE, Calif. (March 11, 2024) – Zone 7 is celebrating Groundwater Awareness Week with a $957,752 federal grant award to help fund the Chain of Lakes (COL) PFAS Treatment Facility, a project that will add Ion Exchange (IX) treatment to the existing facility to remove Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from the well’s groundwater supply. Zone 7 has worked actively with Congressman Eric Swalwell and Congressman Mark DeSaulnier to ensure the safety and continued reliability of the Tri-Valley’s groundwater via the grant funding that will support the construction of the Agency’s second PFAs Treatment Facility. On March 8, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2024 (H.R. 4366), a portion of which secured funding for several environmental projects in the Bay Area, including partial funding for the COL PFAS Treatment Facility.

“Despite the recent rain, California remains vulnerable to drought and our water supply needs to be protected. I am proud to be able to leverage federal resources to augment the work that our communities have been doing for years,” said Congressman Swalwell. “The Chain of Lakes PFAS Treatment Facility is the stage of a committed effort to provide a safe and reliable water supply for the Tri-Valley.”

PFAS are synthetic chemicals used in manufacturing a variety of consumer products such as packaging, non-stick surfaces, and fire-fighting foams. PFAS have been found in air, soil and water around the world, and though water agencies did not create the problem, they are tasked with finding solutions to remove PFAS from affected water sources. IX treatment is a highly effective technology in removing PFAS from water. Construction of the Chain of Lakes facility is expected to be complete in summer 2024.

In 2023, Zone 7 Water Agency received a $16 million grant from the California Department of Water Resources’ (DWR) Sustainable Groundwater Management Grant Program for development of the Stoneridge Well IX PFAS Treatment facility. The facility removes PFAS from groundwater pumped into the facility and was the first facility to offer IX PFAS removal in Northern California.

“We are incredibly appreciative to have the support of Congressman Swalwell and Congressman DeSaulnier, which allows us to implement critical projects to ensure the long-term sustainability of our groundwater basin,” said Zone 7 General Manager Valerie Pryor. “Groundwater Awareness Week is a time for us to celebrate the progress we’ve made with local partnerships and innovative projects as well as share resources and educate the public on how we ensure this valuable local resource is available for future generations.”

Chain of Lakes Supply Well

Photo courtesy Zone 7 Water Agency: One of three drinking water supply wells at the Chain of Lakes Wellfield, currently offline until the PFAS treatment facility is completed.