Reclamation Issues Finding of No Significant Impact for Proposed City of Surprise WaterSMART Project

Media Contact: Patricia Cox , (623) 773-6214
Sandra Eto , (623) 773-6254

For Release: December 27, 2011

Reclamation issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) following the December 2011 completion of an environmental assessment on the City of Surprise’s proposed plan to expand its existing recharge system utilizing reclaimed water.

Reclamation announced a $1 million WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grant for the City of Surprise in May 2011. Through this grant, the City intends to construct and operate 15 additional vadose zone wells, increasing the amount of reclaimed water that can be recharged annually by about 6,049 acre-feet annually (AFA). This $4,517,600 project would enable the City to recharge up to a total maximum of 8,049 AFA of reclaimed water that would be stored underground for later City use.

Established in February 2010 by Secretary Salazar, the WaterSMART program facilitates the work of all bureaus of the Department of the Interior to pursue a sustainable water supply for the nation. It establishes a framework to provide federal leadership and assistance on the efficient use of water, integrating water and energy policies to support the sustainable use of all natural resources, and coordinating the water conservation activities of the various Interior offices. The Bureau of Reclamation plays a leading role in the WaterSMART program as the Department's water management agency.

The FONSI and EA are available on Reclamation’s Phoenix Area Office website, A hard copy or CD version is available by calling the Environmental Resource Management Division at (623) 773-6251, or by e-mailing

Please direct questions to Sandra Eto at (623) 773-6254.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.