Clean, Locally Sourced Water Could Make a Comeback in Lomita

LOMITA, California – Brenda Stephens, who lives in Lomita, has been campaigning for better tap water from the region for seven years.

“It’s nice to be able to turn it on without it smelling really bad,” said Stephens. “My plants like it.”

What you need to know

  • The detection of benzene in the water supply of the Cypress Water Production Facility resulted in the site going offline in May 2019
  • Lomita has a long history of water quality, smell and taste
  • A $ 2 million grant will help finance the installation of a granular activated carbon filtration system
  • According to City Manager Ryan Smoot, the new filter system and CWPF could bring water back from the region by spring 2022

According to Stephens, the smell and taste of the water has been repulsive for years.

“When I turned on my kitchen faucet or ran my washing machine, I had to open all the doors and windows because it smelled like sewage. It smelled like part of the toilet had secured itself and just sat there for months.”

After a long history of water quality issues and evidence of benzene in 2019, Lomita City’s Cypress Water Production Facility has gone offline. The city is currently outsourcing its water supply. For Stephens it was a break from water problems.

“It’s really important to be able to go to my tap and have a glass of water so that I can drink safely and safely,” she said.

In late 2019, Stephens and other Lomita residents took a CWPF tour that showed how a new filtration system can alleviate the city’s problems with local water and bring the facility back online safely. The City of Lomita received a $ 2 million grant from the Water Replenishment District Safe Drinking Water program.

The crews are now starting to install the long-awaited filter system. If everything goes as planned, City Manager Ryan Smoot believes the CWPF could be back online by spring 2022.

“It’s a really big deal for a small community to be able to control their water future,” said Smoot. “And this project enables us to do that. It enables us to be drought resistant. It enables us not to have to rely on imported compounds for decades and to produce safe, healthy drinking water.”

Stephens, who now serves as the city’s planning officer, hopes this will be the answer to the Lomita’s water problems.

“I think it is a great thing for this city if this new system actually does what it is supposed to do and we can be sure that we will have good quality drinking water,” he said.

Until then, Stephens hopes that she can finally enjoy clean water from the region – straight from the tap.

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