Encina Wastewater Authority

Encina Wastewater Authority

The Encina Wastewater Authority (EWA) is a public agency located in Carlsbad, California. Founded in 1961, EWA provides wastewater treatment service to more than 400,000 residents in northwestern San Diego County covering 123 square miles service area. EWA is owned by six public agencies in a unique arrangement called a Joint Powers Agreement. Under this Agreement, these agencies agree to share in the costs and management of EWA in order to get more economical and high-tech facilities than they could get on their own. The six owners are: the City of Carlsbad, City of Vista, City of Encinitas, Vallecitos Water District, Buena Sanitation District, and the Leucadia Wastewater District. The Encina System includes the Encina Water Pollution Control Facility (EWPCF), the Encina Ocean Outfall (Outfall), and the Agua Hedionda (AHPS) and Buena Vista (BVPS) pump stations.

EWA is a contract operator of other regional clean water infrastructure facilities for their respective owner members including the Carlsbad Water Reclamation Facility, the Buena Creek Pump Station, and the Raceway Basin Pump Station. Since 1980, Encina Member Agencies have invested over $600 million in the Encina System – its replacement value is currently estimated at over $370 million. EWA has received over 40 awards for organizational excellence, sustainability, and innovation over the past decade. These accolades reflect the competence of EWA’s highly qualified, trained, and certified workforce.

  • The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recognized EWA as a national leader in green power production since 2011.
  • The California Water Environment Association named the EWPCF California’s “Plant of the Year” in 2005, 2011, 2013 and 2015.
  • EPA also recognized EWA’s Biosolids Management Program as the nation’s best in 2006.

In 2011, EWA created The Energy and Emissions Strategic Plan (Plan) which laid the foundation for EWA’s energy management strategies. At this time, EWA committed to achieve a targeted energy self-generation goal of 95 percent of the total EWPCF electrical needs, and 50 percent of the total EWPCF gas needs by the year 2020. Subsequently, EWA has performed several energy optimization and reduction projects, including lining of aeration headers, pump system rehabilitation, etc. In 2015, EWA built an Alternative Fuel Program (AFP) at a cost of $2.9 million, to receive FOG (fats, oils and grease) delivered by a private hauler to increase the production of biogas in the anaerobic digesters, which fuels the existing biosolids dryer. This allowed EWA to reduce purchases of natural gas and to generate additional electricity at their four cogeneration engines. 

Plants Challenge Commitment
Better Plants Energy Performance
25%Reduction in Energy Intensity