Meet Mesa Water
Clear, abundant, safe water is essential for the quality of life we have come to expect in Orange County. Since 1960, Mesa Water has been providing clean, safe, reliable drinking water at a reasonable cost to the people we serve.
We strive to deliver high-quality drinking water to your tap, maintain a safe, reliable water infrastructure and system, and provide excellent service to ensure customer satisfaction.
We supply water to 110,000 residents in an 18-square-mile area. The service area includes Costa Mesa, parts of Newport Beach, and some unincorporated areas of Orange County, including John Wayne Airport.
Mesa Water is a special district led by a five-member Board of Directors elected by the public. Each Director represents one of five divisions and serves a four-year term. Because we do not accept revenue from government sources, our leadership has the ability to set water rates, which are among the lowest in the county. We operate independent of city and county government and are proud of our AAA rating.
Mesa Water is committed to fiscal responsibility and transparency. Over the past decade, the District has reduced staff size by 18 percent, and reduced overtime by 27 percent. All Board meetings are open to the public; agendas are published in advance and can be found here. We welcome members of the public to speak at any of our meetings.
Water Sources, Treatment and Delivery
Water Treatment and Delivery
We are committed to the continued investment in and proactive maintenance of our infrastructure, which pumps, treats and delivers each year nearly 5 billion gallons of quality drinking water to homes and businesses. The system includes 317 miles of pipeline, seven wells, two reservoirs and the Mesa Water Reliability Facility (MWRF) – “Murph” for short. Thanks to this state-of-the-art facility, we are the only Orange County water provider to source 100 percent of our community’s water needs with a local supply. The MWRF features two deep-water wells, a million-gallon reservoir and nanofiltration technology for water treatment. The MWRF help achieve the Board of Directors’ long-time goal of sustainability.
Mesa Water was the first OC water purveyor to treat amber-color water. Roots from redwood trees deep underground make the water the color of weak tea. The color is removed during treatment at the Mesa Water Reliability Facility.
Water is pumped from Orange County’s groundwater basin, which underlies north-central Orange County from Irvine to the Los Angeles County border and from Yorba Linda to the Pacific Ocean. The basin is replenished by water from the Santa Ana River and imported water from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. Mesa Water is not dependent on outside sources, but imported water from Northern California and the Colorado River is accessible if needed.
Mesa Water promotes the importance of conservation through public outreach and education programs. We are proud that our customers are using less water and have reduced water use by more than 20 percent since June 2015. The drought’s not over, so we encourage you to keep up those water-wise habits and make improvements in your home and landscape when possible.
Additionally, we encourage commercial and industrial customers to use reclaimed water for greenbelt areas. Using reclaimed water for irrigation purposes saves drinking water for other uses.
Thank you for being Mesa Water Savers!
The History of Mesa Water District
The Early Years
Around 1906, the community Mesa Water District (Mesa Water) proudly serves was established on what is known as the "coastal tableland". At that time, the city of Costa Mesa was known as Harper. Only a few years earlier, severe drought had driven most of the original farming families away.
The Water Begins to Flow
The La Habra Valley Land and Water Company built the first water system in the area and drilled the very first well in 1910, bringing much needed water to the parched community. In 1913 the Fairview Farms Mutual Water Company constructed a system to be used for agricultural purposes and in 1918 the Newport Heights Irrigation District was formed to serve domestic and irrigation water. These two agencies later acquired the facilities of the La Habra Water Company.
The Growth of a Community
Because of the continued growth in the early 1900s, the Newport Mesa Irrigation District and the Santa Ana Heights Water Company were created to meet the demand of the booming community. Years later, two of the agencies renamed themselves. The Fairview Farms Mutual Water Company became the Fairview County Water District and Newport Heights Irrigation District became the Newport Mesa County Water District.
The Historical Merger
In 1953, the city of Costa Mesa became an incorporated city and in 1955, it created a municipal water system to serve the areas beyond the four existing district boundaries.
On June 30, 1959, the Governor of California, Edmund Gerald “Pat” Brown, Sr. signed Senate Bill 1375 (Costa Mesa District Merger Law). On January 1, 1960, Mesa Water (formerly known as the Costa Mesa County Water District) commenced operations by acquiring the assets and obligations and assumed the responsibility of consolidating the city of Costa Mesa's Water Department, Fairview County Water District, Newport Mesa Irrigation District, and Newport Mesa County Water District. The Santa Ana Heights Water Company was originally involved in merger discussions, but withdrew before consolidation.
Mesa Water set a precedent with this merger as the first California water agency to consolidate two or more water agencies and assume both their assets and debts.