Cambria looking at solutions to address stressed water supply

KSBY toured the wastewater treatment facility located behind Hearst San Simeon State Park
Posted at 6:28 PM, Jun 06, 2022

Amid the drought, the community of Cambria wants to expand its ability to replenish groundwater supplies.

Cambria is an idyllic town nestled in the pines, but drought could quickly spell trouble for an area that gets its water supply from just two creeks.

"The environment and the climate, as you know, right now is changing constantly," said John Weigold, Cambria Community Services District General Manager.

The Cambria Community Services District is now looking to adapt to a changing climate.

KSBY toured the wastewater treatment facility located behind Hearst San Simeon State Park.

"What we do is take the clean water coming out of our wastewater plant which is about a mile and a half away," said Weigold.

That water sits in nearby ponds before it goes through a three-step filtration system.

"So as that bucket gets lower, this helps re-inject water about 1,800 feet from here," said Jim Green, Water Systems Superintendent for the CCSD.

The water then gradually flows back into wells that supply Cambria's drinking water.

Currently, the facility can only be used in a stage 5 drought emergency.

The district now wants the ability to use it on an as-needed basis. That could be during the dry summer months or any extended period without any rain.

"There may be a dry spell in the middle of winter, off-cycle. We may need to operate it then," said Weigold. "It's hard to tell the future based off how the climate is changing."

The Cambria Community Services District will vote on entering stage 2 drought restrictions on Thursday.

The district is going through the permitting process to allow for a more permanent operation of the wastewater treatment plant.