Recycled & Reclaimed Water
RECLAIMED water is highly treated wastewater used to support wildlife and pasture.
RECYCLED water is wastewater that is treated to near-drinking quality that is used for irrigation.
Novato Sanitary District recycles and reclaims about 550 million gallons of treated wastewater per year – almost 40% of its dry weather flow. Very few Bay Area communities reach that level of reuse.
Recycled Water is Helping Keep Novato Green
For over a decade we have been providing high-quality recycled water to North Marin Water District for the irrigation of local large landscapes like golf courses, parks, schools, car washes, and cemeteries. This is part of a collaborative recycled water program with North Bay Water Reuse Authority.
- Our recycled water is of the highest quality (Tertiary) and is fully approved for use on landscapes. It is not certified for drinking at this level, but it is second only to drinking water in purity.
- Recycled water is locally controlled and sustainable. It is a smart reuse of an essential community resource.
- Recycling water benefits the environment by using less energy than developing other sources would require and it has a lower carbon footprint.
- Recycled water is safe. In over 80+ years of use in California, no documented cases of illness have been reported when used correctly.
Recycled water frees up potable water for homes and businesses and helps keep Novato Green, especially during droughts.
Bay Club Stone Tree Golf Course is just one of many properties irrigated with recycled water from a cooperative project between Novato Sanitary District and North Marin Water District
Reclaimed Water is Supporting Wildlife And Pastureland
In the mid-1980s, the District made a forward-thinking investment to enhance the productivity of its agricultural land by using millions of gallons of its highly treated wastewater for irrigation in the summer months.
Map showing the locations of the Pastureland and Wildlife Pond supported with reclaimed water from Novato Sanitary District.
About 800 acres of pastureland is irrigated entirely by reclaimed water through an extensive and mostly hidden system of 141 miles of pipeline, pumps, valves, and 14,500 sprinklers
Supporting our Agricultural and Ranching Heritage. Irrigating the Districts pastureland with highly treated reclaimed water helps to preserve open space and maintain a link to our agricultural heritage. By leasing our pastureland to a cattle rancher, who is responsible for the care of the property, we continue our ranching history that results in additional cost savings.
A view of the pasturelands.
Some of the sprinklers used to irrigate the pasture are visible in this photo of the herd.
Enhanced Wildlife Habitat. Novato Sanitary District’s wildlife pond can be home to nearly fifty different species of birds including ducks, coots, grebes, warblers, pelicans, finch, geese, and hawks, all benefiting from the improved habitat. Several species of birds overwinter here.
This photo shows pelicans on the water at our Wildlife Pond that supports waterfowl, migrating birds, and native animal species.
Supplying Hamilton Wetlands and Bel Marin Keys Restoration. New wetland habitats for wildlife and flood control are being created by the California State Coastal Conservancy. The District has already provided 42 million gallons of reclaimed water for dust control, and irrigation to establish vegetation for the project.
An image showing the new Coastal Conservancy wetlands under construction. The wetlands construction was supported with reclaimed water from Novato Sanitary District. The District will continue to support the project with additional reclaimed water once completed.
Protecting the San Francisco Bay. By providing wastewater treatment that exceeds federal and state standards the District continues to be a leader in protecting the Bay.