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Did You Know? Where RSM Water Really Comes From
by: Debbie L. Sklar
The SMWD provides clean water to over 150,000 residents.
The SMWD provides clean water to over 150,000 residents.

Did you ever stop to wonder where your water comes from when you turn on the tap in your kitchen or hop into the shower?

Thanks to the Santa Margarita Water District you have fresh water to drink, take a shower with and wash your clothes and car any time you wish.

In fact, the SMWD is considered to be Orange County’s second-largest water district, providing water and wastewater treatment services to more than 150,000 residents and businesses in Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Coto de Caza, Las Flores, Ladera Ranch, and Talega, according to its Web site.

Broken down, the SMWD has eight areas that it covers encompassing about 52,000 acres of land.

And your water doesn’t just come from the ground either because So Cal actually has very few local water sources.

According to SMWD, water districts in North Orange County have access to an underground aquifer, which gives then about more than half of its water supply. However, with no aquifer to tap in South Orange County, SMWD relies on other water sources, such as groundwater reuse and water recycling programs, to supply your water.

Almost all of the district’s water supply is purchased from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which sends water to the area from Northern California by State Water Project and from the Colorado River via the Colorado River Aqueduct.

Don’t fret though, water from these places is purified and tested at the Diemer Filtration Plant in Yorba Linda to make sure it meets federal drinking water standards. Then, it is piped to SMWD, and finally to you.

Debbie L. Sklar is a 20+year journalism veteran residing in Southern California, where she is a writer, columnist and editor for many local, regional and national publications. Sklar may be reached via e-mail at

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