Salinity Management Guide
National Water Research Institute
Southwest Membrane Operator Association
Multi-State Salinity Coalition


SCSC is a coalition of water and wastewater agencies in Southern California dedicated to managing salinity in our water supplies.
The Southern California Salinity Coalition (SCSC) was formed in 2002 to address the critical need to remove salt from water supplies and to preserve water resources in California.

Salt is a natural element of soils and water. However, human practices have increased salinity in soils and source waters dramatically.

The consequences of salinity include:

  • Detrimental effects on plant growth and crop yield.
  • Damage to infrastructure.
  • Reduction of water quality.
  • Sedimentation problems.
  • Soil erosion.

SCSC's purpose is to coordinate salinity management strategies and programs, including research projects, with water and wastewater agencies throughout Southern California.

SCSC's Objectives:

  • Establish proactive programs to address the critical need to remove salts from water supplies.
  • Preserve, sustain, and enhance the quality of source water supplies.
  • Support economic development.
  • Reach out to the general public on salinity problems.

Critical Salinity-Related Issues:

  • Desalting.
  • Groundwater Basin Cleanup.
  • Brine Disposal.
  • Wastewater Systems.
  • Source Control.
  • Watershed and basin planning.
  • Ensure Sustainability of Supplies.
  • Research and Development Programs.

The Benefits of Reducing Salinity: Salinity impacts residential, commercial, industrial, and agricultural water users, groundwater, wastewater, and recycled water resources, and utility distribution systems.

When salinity levels of imported water are reduced, the region benefits from both the improved use of local groundwater and recycled water and reduced costs to water consumers and utilities. A 100 milligram per liter (mg/L) salinity decrease in imported water would result in $95 million per year of economic benefits. Similarly, a 100 mg/L reduction in salt content in groundwater would lead to $65 million per year of economic benefits.

Salinity reduction and the resulting improved water quality would provide the following possible benefits:

  • Reduced costs to water consumers and utilities.
  • Millions of dollars saved in damages to pipes, faucets, washing machines, dish washers, water heaters, and other appliances.
  • Increased crop yields.
  • Improved consumer confidence.
  • Decreased desalination and brine disposal costs.
  • Reduced salt build-up in groundwater.
  • Improved aesthetic quality for public consumers.