The city of Santa Maria received notification from the Central Coast Water Authority (CCWA) that harmless algae compounds recently entered the State Water supply. High temperatures created ideal conditions for blue-green algae blooms in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, affecting State Water Project customers, including Santa Maria.

These compounds, identified as Geosmin, impart an earthy or musty odor and taste to water. These compounds do not affect water quality.

The city’s water supply remains safe for consumption and use. Customers may have various levels of sensitivity to the taste and odor imparted by the harmless algae. Chilling water or adding citrus prior to drinking helps to reduce the earthy or musty odor and taste.

The CCWA is adjusting its treatment process to reduce the concentration of algae compounds delivered in State Water. Santa Maria will also make operational changes as necessary to reduce the impact to the city’s water system and continue to monitor water quality to meet all federal and state drinking water standards.

Questions may be directed to the Utilities Department, 805-925-0951 ext. 7270.