California water district addressing meter performance with AI

The Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District (EVMWD) in southern California has launched a pilot program to deploy smart technology from intelligent solutions and services provider Olea Edge Analytics to 25 of its large commercial meters in its service area.

Olea’s Meter Health Analytics (MHA) solution uses AI technology to provide previously unattainable insights into the performance of commercial and industrial water meters, which can have an outsized impact on both water loss and utility revenue.

Municipalities across California have asked their customers to reduce their water use as the state contends with its third straight year of drought. Despite some respite from heavy rains in December and January, the need for efficiency remains to ensure supplies for the future. While customers are doing their own part individually, the District also implements tactics to ensure water reliability in its own systems.

“When confronting the challenges of drought, EVMWD takes a multifaceted approach to ensure water is available 24/7 for our community,” said Greg Thomas, General Manager of Elsinore Valley Municipal Water District. “Using tools, like Olea’s solution for larger meters, will allow our Operations team to more accurately detect and address water loss.” 

A 2018 study found that non-revenue water — water that has been produced but is “lost” before it reaches the customer — comprised 30 percent of water system input volumes worldwide. The total cost of such losses for utilities can be up to $39 billion per year.

“EVMWD is one of the country’s most technologically savvy utility companies, and they were interested in trying an innovative solution to reduce water loss and maximize water efficiency,” Olea Edge Analytics CFO Jennifer Crow said. “When large commercial meters perform optimally, it benefits the entire system. The largest water consumers are billed accurately, and utilities can address significant apparent water loss quickly.”

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EVMWD is a public non-profit agency and a special district charged with public water service, water supply development and planning, wastewater treatment and disposal, and recycling. Currently, the district has over 42,000 water, wastewater and agricultural service connections. EVMWD is a sub agency of the Western Municipal Water District, a member agency of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.

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