Public Meeting on New River Improvement Project

For Immediate Release:
July 16, 2019                                        

Media Contact: Sheryl A. Watson, (916) 324-9670

CALEXICO – A project to improve water quality in the New River as it crosses into California took a major step forward with the completion of design and engineering plans for the New River Improvement Project.  The California Environmental Protection Agency and the city of Calexico will hold a public meeting Thursday to provide an update on progress and discuss key components of the overall New River Improvement Project Strategic Plan.

WHO:      CalEPA and the city of Calexico

Also participating are representatives of the Colorado River Regional Water Quality Control Board, Imperial County and Imperial Irrigation District.

WHAT:    Public Meeting on New River Improvement Project

WHEN:    5-7 p.m. on Thursday, July 18, 2019

Women’s Improvement Club, 320 Herber Ave., Calexico, CA 92231

Background: The New River is one of the most polluted rivers in the nation. Trash and waste from municipal, agricultural, and industrial sources cause heavy pollution throughout the New River, which runs from Mexico through the city of Calexico to the Salton Sea. It poses serious threats to public health and hinders local economic development. 

The New River Improvement Project addresses these problems by recommending the installment of a trash screen just downstream from the Mexico border and a pump-back water system that replaces polluted water in the river channel with treated wastewater from the city’s treatment plant, enabling New River water to be piped for water quality remediation through wetlands and aeration structures north of Calexico. The New River Improvement Project also envisions a pedestrian and bicycle parkway that would run along the river in the Calexico area, and supports the Calexico New River Parkway development.

This meeting will include presentations on the strategic plan, progress to date, and ideas for funding to address the harmful environmental conditions of the river. 

The New River Improvement Project was created by Assembly Bill 1079, in 2009.  AB 1079 also required the California-Mexico Border Relations Council to develop a strategic plan to guide its implementation.