Where does the water used by communities served by the Waterwise Community Center and Chino Basin Water Conservation District come from?

The water we use comes from a variety of sources, the greatest being groundwater, which is water contained in between soils and gravels in the ground deep beneath our communities. It is pumped up, cleaned, and distributed to us by our local water agencies.

The majority of the groundwater used by our communities comes from the Chino Basin, but others, including the Cucamonga, Rialto, Lytle Creek, Colton, and the Six Basins groundwater basins are also used.

The Chino Groundwater Basin is an incredible resource for our region. It provides approximately half of the water supply for our agency’s sphere of influence, which includes the areas of Chino, Chino Hills, Montclair, Ontario, Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga, and Upland.

Many areas of Southern California do not have such a significant groundwater resource and need to rely much more heavily on imported water. 

Surface water from local creeks fed from the San Gabriel Mountains, recycled water produced by the Inland Empire Utilities Agency, and imported water delivered from Northern California via the State Water Project (though the Metropolitan Water District and the Inland Empire Utilities Agency) are additional important sources.

Water imported to our area is delivered via the State Water Project, a network of reservoirs, power plants, pumping plants, tunnels, pipes, aqueducts, and canals, spanning 700 miles through the state. The system depends primarily upon rain and snow melt coming from the Sierra Nevada Mountains into the Sacramento River and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. The water supplies available to public agencies and customers vary from year to year depending on the quantity of this rain and snow melt. It serves over 25 million people, businesses, and farms.

a CBWCD percolation basin
A CBWCD percolation basin
Groundwater Reserve

Water Supply By The Numbers*

Chino Basin Groundwater 51%
Imported Water 28%
Other Groundwater 9%
Recycled Water 7%
Surface Water 5%

*Numbers extrapolated from Inland Empire Utilities Agency 2015 Urban Water Management Plan.

These numbers represent aggregated water supply to the areas of Chino, Chino Hills, Ontario, Montclair, Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga, and Upland.