Topic: Desalination



Recurrent droughts and uncertainties about future water supplies have led several California communities to look to saltwater for supplemental supplies through a process known as desalination.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

How San Diego has water despite a punishing drought

In many parts of California, reminders abound that the American West is running out of water. “Bathtub rings” mark the shrinking of the state’s biggest reservoirs to some of their lowest recorded levels. Fields lie fallow, as farmers grapple with an uncertain future. A bed-and-breakfast owner spends $5 whenever a tourist showers. But not in San Diego County. In this coastal desert metropolis, life has stayed mostly the same for residents already accustomed to conserving what they have long treated as a precious resource.

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Aquafornia news The Mendocino Voice

Fort Bragg downgrades water emergency, no longer receiving water from Ukiah

Recent rainfall and the arrival of a desalination system are allowing Fort Bragg to reduce the city’s water emergency from a Stage 4 water crisis to a Stage 2 water alert. That means businesses and residents can ease up slightly on their water conservation efforts. The city was also able to pause receipts of water from the city of Ukiah since water deliveries were exceeding demand. Fort Bragg can meet that demand now without outside help.

Aquafornia news Spectrum News 1

San Diego’s proactive measures for reliable water supply

Drinking water from this tap makes San Diego County Water Authority’s General Manager Sandy Kerl smile — and for good reason. Back in the drought of the ’90s, 95% of San Diego’s water came from one source, and they faced 30% cuts for 13 months. … Fast-forward 30 years later, and the San Diego County Water Authority has multiple streams of water sources in its portfolio, including the groundbreaking Carlsbad Desalination Plant that utilizes ocean water to provide the region with about 10% of its drinking water.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Supervisors inch forward on allowing private ownership of desalination plants in Monterey County

The question of whether private ownership of desalination plants will be allowed in Monterey County remains unresolved, but supervisors on Oct. 12 voted 4-1 to direct county staff to prepare a study on overturning the 32-year prohibition on private ownership.  … The law has been thrust into the spotlight as Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp., a publicly traded, $11 billion Canada-based company, has proposed construction of what could be a massive regional desalination plant in Moss Landing. The project has the potential to produce 32,000 acre-feet of drinking water when built out.

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Aquafornia news WaterWorld

Fort Bragg, CA to launch desalination system

With funding from the California State Water Resources Control Board, the City of Fort Bragg is launching a desalination-reverse osmosis system that can treat up to 144,000 gallons per day. The system will treat water from the Noyo River, where saltwater intrusion during high tide can often render the water unsuitable for drinking.

Aquafornia news Fort Bragg Advocate-News

Fort Bragg takes possession of water desalination unit

Six months ago the City of Fort Bragg ordered a desalination-reverse osmosis treatment system to help provide drinking water during periods of saltwater intrusion at its main Noyo River water source. The skid-mounted unit has arrived and can produce 200 gallons of desalinated water a minute, or 288,000 gallons of water per day, but because the unit can only run for 12 hours a day, the daily capacity will top out at 144,000 gallons.

Aquafornia news Mercury News

Opinion: How California can solve its growing water crisis

Here are the steps — starting with the least intrusive and least expensive — that state and local government need to take now to avoid the dystopia that Cape Town, South Africa, endured in 2018 when the faucets ran dry. … First, we should make conservation a way of life. Utilities must increase tried-and-true mandatory 20% conservation and water recycling from 2019 usage. … We also need to shift water retailer’s own incentives. While they will never say it publicly, water utilities do not like conservation, because selling less water means less revenue.
-Written by Steve Westly, a former California State Controller and founder of The Westly Group; and Gary Kremen, representing District 7 on the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors.

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Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Lawsuit seeks to block Poseidon desalination plant in Huntington Beach

Two environmental groups have sued the Regional Water Quality Control Board over its decision to grant a permit for Poseidon Water’s desalination plant proposed for Huntington Beach, saying the board’s environmental review of the project was inadequate. Poseidon has been working on the controversial, $1.4 billion project for 22 years. The regional board’s approval on April 29 leaves the company needing one more permit, from the state Coastal Commission, before it can negotiate a final contract with the Orange County Water District and begin construction.

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Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: Celebrate recycled water agreement, but don’t forget desal

The Monterey Peninsula’s water supply challenges require partnership and collaboration to solve. After months of negotiation, California American Water, Monterey One Water and the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District have agreed to terms that enable California American Water to purchase recycled water from the Pure Water Monterey Expansion project. This represents a critical step toward the development of a reliable, long-term water supply for the local community.
 -Written by Rich Svindland, president of California American Water

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Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey Peninsula water officials reach agreement on Cal Am water purchase

Key staff from three water organizations along the Monterey Peninsula have apparently reached an agreement on a deal that will send hundreds of acre-feet of new water to California American Water Co. for distribution up and down the Peninsula. Monterey One Water, the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District and Cal Am reached an agreement at a joint meeting Wednesday whereby Cal Am agreed to purchase water from Monterey One’s Pure Water Monterey expansion project.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Private desal question highlights geographic divisions over water among county lawmakers

Water is a marquee issue in Monterey County. But when it comes to private ownership of desalination plants, something currently prohibited under local law, county lawmakers are divided. For some, private ownership goes against the will of voters and could trigger a future of lengthy legal battles. For others, private ownership offers a chance for market competition and an accelerated path toward solving the county’s water shortages.

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Aquafornia news Stanford School of Engineering

New research looks to lower the high cost of desalination

Removing salt and other impurities from sea-, ground- and wastewater could solve the world’s looming freshwater crisis. And yet, while industrial-scale seawater desalination plants do exist in coastal areas where the freshwater challenge is most acute, the process of making undrinkable water drinkable is largely out of reach for inland water sources due to the high cost of concentrate disposal.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Drought: Marin, Saudi crown prince eyeing same desalination plants

Marin County water officials are thinking of buying three desalination plants to bolster local supplies, but they’re facing an unlikely competitor — Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The Marin Municipal Water District, which might deplete its reservoirs by next summer if the drought continues, had considered renting two portable desalination plants for nearly $30 million from Osmoflo, an Australian company. Last week, the district staff said a third plant has become available and that purchasing them might be less expensive than renting. 

Aquafornia news Voices of Monterey Bay

Opinion: Desal health and safety

I have been receiving numerous calls from worried residents of Monterey County about the current Board of Supervisors’ proposed elimination of the health and safety protection ordinance that requires public ownership of desalination plants.  This wrong-headed proposal to dismantle public protections of our water supply will be discussed Tuesday by the Board of Supervisors.
-Written by Marc Del Piero, an attorney and native of Monterey County.

Aquafornia news San Clemente Times

Cost analysis for desalination presented to SCWD board

Ocean desalination has been named as one of the South Coast Water District’s top priorities—even more so as California undergoes an unprecedented water shortage. In 2008, a Pilot Ocean Desalination Project was first initiated at Doheny State Beach, and the facility operated successfully for 21 months between 2010 and 2012. Subsequent to this effort, the District has proceeded with planning for an Ocean Desalination Facility. 

Aquafornia news American Society of Civil Engineers

Blog: Desalination offers great promise, requires further research, panelists say

With much of California and other western U.S. states experiencing significant drought, the need to pursue further advancements in desalination has never been greater. This was a central theme of an Aug. 11 webinar, titled “Discussion on Desalination — Treatments, Research, and the Future,” conducted by the WateReuse Association. Historically, desalination has been viewed as a separate component within the water sector, but that perception is changing, said Peter Fiske, Ph.D., the executive director for the National Alliance for Water Innovation and one of three presenters featured during the webinar. 

Aquafornia news The Press

Antioch launches the region’s first water desalination project

The city of Antioch’s water supply has been challenged in recent years by a variety of factors. But the Brackish Water Desalination Project, the first desalination project of its kind in the five-county Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta region, is intended to improve the reliability of the city’s water. The city filed its notice of preparation for the project just over four years ago and then broke ground on the plant in February of this year.

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Aquafornia news Courthouse News Service

Pressed by drought and climate change, a California city turns to desalination

Founded on a lush plain of the largest estuary on the West Coast of North America shortly after gold was discovered, Antioch’s fortunes have always risen and fallen with the delta tides. One of California’s oldest settlements, what started as a ranch town morphed decades ago into an industrial city due to its riverside locale and proximity to San Francisco. Family farms gave way to coal and copper mines, mills and warehouses took over downtown and the city steadily grew into one of the Bay Area’s largest.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Repeal of county law prohibiting private operation of desal plants set for Sept. 21 discussion

Monterey County is the only county is California with a law that prohibits private companies from operating new desalination plants. That law, passed in 1989, will be up for a potential repeal when the county’s supervisors meet on Sept. 21. The law has been thrust into the spotlight as Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp., a publicly traded, $11 billion Canada-based company, has proposed construction of what could be a massive regional desalination plant in Moss Landing.

Aquafornia news Santa Cruz Sentinel

Opinion: The costs and ocean impacts of desalination

The Santa Cruz Water Department has the responsibility for providing clean safe water for all of its 96,000 customers located both inside and outside of the city limits, and also for planning ahead for future needs. Most readers will recall that about 15 years ago, in the wake of earlier droughts and water rationing, the City of Santa Cruz initiated an evaluation of a joint desalination project with the Soquel Creek Water District.
-Written by Gary Griggs, Santa Cruz Sentinel columnist. 

Aquafornia news Water News Network

National awards for Pure Water San Diego’s John Carroll

John Carroll, the City of San Diego’s Pure Water Treatment Plant superintendent, received the 2021 Robert O. Vernon Membrane Plant Operator of the Year Award from the American Membrane Technology Association and the American Water Works Association. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to water supply improvement by an individual working at a membrane filtration, desalination, and/or water reuse facility. 

Aquafornia news Spectrum News 1

Could desalination solve all our water problems?

If you haven’t noticed yet, we are in the middle of a mega-drought in California. It’s becoming more and more obvious that water is really our most precious resource. And most of it is shipped in from elsewhere. But speaking of shipping, there’s also the other stuff that ships are actually floating in. So why can’t we just drink that?

Aquafornia news Ensia

Could desalination play a role in the Colorado River Basin’s future?

In North America, the countries that share the Colorado River Delta are experiencing a similar reality as their own diplomatic relationship is shaped by cross-border water exchanges. And like Israel and Jordan, the U.S. and Mexico are now considering the role desalination might play in sharing this vital resource. … Establishing a desalination facility jointly operated by the U.S. and Mexico could help “bolster resilience in the Colorado River Basin,” according to the Binational Study of Water Desalination Opportunities in the Sea of Cortez.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey Peninsula water officials balk at agreement with Cal Am

An agreement that would turn on the taps for recycled water for Monterey Peninsula residents hit a speed bump Monday when water officials balked at a clause that would require the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District to support any California American Water Co. project, including desalination, should the recycled water fail to meet a promised amount. For Cal Am to purchase water from Monterey One Water’s Pure Water Monterey Expansion project, a water purchase agreement, or WPA, would need to be signed by Cal Am, Monterey One Water and the water district. 

Aquafornia news Oceanside Patch

Oceanside awarded $1.6m for Watersmart projects

The City of Oceanside is being awarded $1.06 million for its planned Well Expansion and Brine Minimization Project from the Federal Bureau of Reclamation under the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act Desalination Program. The City previously received $2.623 million from the Bureau of Reclamation in 2018 and combined with this latest award, the total grant funding for this project totals $3.683 million. 

Aquafornia news ABC 10

Why isn’t there desalination facilities near drought cities?

[A]s we sit squarely in the middle of another drought, adding more seawater desalination facilities has become a louder discussion. Right now, California has 12 desalination facilities in operation, but there are calls for more.  There are three in the Northern California area near Monterey and San Francisco. As for proposed desalination facilities, there are 15 in all, including seven in Northern California. Construction is underway in nearby Antioch on a brackish water desalination facility that’s the first of its kind in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Opinion: Voters played role in Marin Municipal Water District shortage

The welcome arch across Modesto’s main street proclaims, “Water, wealth, contentment, health.” In essence, water, the first word, directly leads to the following benefits. The same formula applies to Marin. Now it’s the scarcity of water that endangers our county’s ability to enjoy the benefits of wealth, contentment and health. The entire American West is enduring a drought of epic proportions. The globe’s climate will only get warmer in the next 50 years. Marin is late preparing for that eventuality. Doing so isn’t impossible but it comes with a hefty price tag and can’t happen overnight.
-Written by Dick Spotswood, Marin IJ columnist.

Aquafornia news WaterWorld

Researchers develop more efficient desalination with solar energy

Ural Federal University (UrFU) engineers have developed a new desalination technology. It will significantly reduce the cost of desalination and quadruple the volume of production. The results of the research are published in the journal Case Studies in Thermal Engineering. Today one of the most popular and simple ways of desalination is the distillation of water with the help of solar energy. UrFU scientists, together with colleagues from Iraq, have developed a hybrid technology to increase the efficiency of evaporation inside a solar distiller by means of a rotating hollow cylinder and a solar collector.

Aquafornia news KQED

Gripped by drought, Marin considers desalination, water pipeline over the Richmond Bridge

As the drought deepens across the West, coastal cities are considering whether or not to filter ocean water as a solution to their water woes. In the Bay Area, Marin Water is mulling plans to draw its drinking water from the San Francisco Bay. Reservoir levels in Marin County are at historic lows this year, and water leaders are calling for a 40% reduction. So far the county has reached a 23% reduction, says Cynthia Koehler, president of the agency’s board of directors.

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Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

San Diego’s water desalination efforts could get boost in federal funding

Desalination projects in the San Diego area could get millions in federal funding under a bill Rep. Mike Levin introduced Tuesday. The Desalination Development Act would provide $260 million over five years for desalination projects across the country, including Oceanside’s Mission Basin Groundwater Purification Facility, which converts brackish flows into potable water, said Levin (D-San Juan Capistrano). It also sets environmental standards for projects that get federal funding, with requirements for energy efficiency, wildlife protection and water conservation.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey County officials get earful about private desal projects

Advocates for public water systems on Tuesday jumped quickly on a request by a Monterey County supervisor to consider amending a law that currently allows only public ownership and operation of desalination facilities. The request came in the form of a board referral, an instrument allowing members of the Board of Supervisors to make requests to the county’s chief administrative officer for work by staff or additional information on a specific topic.

Aquafornia news ABC7 San Francisco

California drought: Cities are taking a closer look at seawater desalination to deal with water shortages

As more communities impose water use restrictions because of the drought, the California Coastal Commission is likely to vote on a controversial proposal later this year that could ease water worries for millions of Orange County residents. After decades of debate, Poseidon Water just needs approval from the commission to begin the construction of a desalination facility in Huntington Beach that would produce 50 million gallons of drinking water per day. 

Aquafornia news Reuters

Desalination advances in California despite opponents pushing for alternatives

Environmentalists say desalination decimates ocean life, costs too much money and energy, and soon will be made obsolete by water recycling. But as Western states face an epic drought, regulators appear ready to approve a desalination plant in Huntington Beach, California. After spending 22 years and $100 million navigating a thicket of state regulations and environmentalists’ challenges, Poseidon Water is down to one major regulatory hurdle – the California Coastal Commission.

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Aquafornia news Santa Barbara News-Press

City Council to consider partnerships with La Cumbre Mutual Water Company

The Santa Barbara City Council will discuss negotiating a water supply agreement with La Cumbre Mutual Water Company during their regular meeting Tuesday.  Due to water supply shortages exacerbated by drought conditions, officials from La Cumbre Mutual Water Company have asked the City to negotiate a long-term supply agreement tied to the Charles E. Meyer Desalination Plant.  The Desal plant, which was constructed by the City in 1991, acts as a regional water supply for the City, the Goleta Water District and the Montecito Water District.

Aquafornia news Treehugger

Blog: What is desalination? Overview and impact

Desalination is the process of converting seawater into potable water by removing salt and other minerals. Although rudimentary forms of desalination have been used since antiquity, only in the mid-20th century did industrial-scale desalination methods become widely available for water-insecure coastal communities around the world. Today, about 300 million people in more than 150 countries get water every day from some 16,000 desalination plants. 

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Drought: Marin vets options for desalination, water pipeline

Marin Municipal Water District announced Friday that it has found a potential vendor for temporary desalination plants and four Central Valley water suppliers that could transfer water to the county through a pipeline across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. The emergency water projects are being explored based on forecasts that the majority of Marin residents could run out of water by July 2022 if the upcoming winter is as dry as last year’s. The district serves about two-thirds of the county including 191,000 residents in central and southern Marin. 

Aquafornia news Mountain View Online

Valley Water presents $16M check for small salt-removal facility

With drought on everyone’s mind, city leaders from Palo Alto and Mountain View held a brief summit on June 18 at the Regional Water Quality Control Plant to highlight a project that both cities hope will help make water consumption more sustainable for decades to come. Mayors Tom DuBois and Ellen Kamei met with Valley Water board member Gary Kremen at the Palo Alto facility to accept a $16 million check from the water district. 

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Opinion: Environmental consequences of pipeline, desalination plans must be considered

How can Marin County effectively address the severe drought we’re in? Right now, many are reasonably urging the Marin Municipal Water District to explore desalination and a water supply line on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. Apparently our water district is proceeding expediently with this exploration, so they can implement those measures as quickly as possible if needed. However, we should recognize that with urgent competition for water throughout the southwestern U.S., these measures have uncertainties, will take time and require very large expense and energy use.
-Written by Tom Flynn, team lead at 

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Marin’s abandoned desal plan looms over drought crisis

The Marin Municipal Water District, facing the possibility of running out of water next summer, is scrambling to plan for two emergency projects to keep the taps flowing in case of another dry winter: a temporary desalination plant and a pipeline across San Francisco Bay. But nearly 11 years ago, the district chose not to build a desalination plant that could have supplied as much as 60% of its current yearly potable water demand — though at a high price. The district, which serves 191,000 residents in central and southern Marin, had been exploring desalination since the early 1990s and has tested two pilot desalting sites.

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Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey Peninsula water officials object to Cal Am’s ‘unfounded accusations’

The board of the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District approved a letter to state water officials Tuesday that is a stinging rebuke of what they say is California American Water Company’s attempt to blame the district for Cal Am’s failure to meet required milestones in its proposed desalination project. Information supplied to the State Water Resources Control Board is important to the entire Monterey Peninsula because it will take that information and data and use it to make decisions affecting the water availability to the Monterey Peninsula.

Aquafornia news Sacramento Bee

Opinion: Israel’s water conservative policies far exceed California’s

When Donald Trump referred to the COVID pandemic as a “plague,” he was implying that it was an act of God that couldn’t be blamed on the government. We are now told that the acute water shortage in California is the result of a “drought” that has, once again, lead to water restrictions. This biblical term obscures the responsibility that our local governments bear for this crisis. Countries facing far harsher climates and much scarcer water supply, like Israel, have adopted straightforward policies to avoid such crises. We should learn from their example.
-Written by Ron E. Hassner, the Helen Diller Family chair in Israel Studies and the co-director of the Helen Diller Institute for Israel Studies at U.C. Berkeley.

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Aquafornia news Maven's Notebook

Salinity management: Putting Southern California’s water supply on a low sodium diet

While the saying, “too much of a good thing,” sounds pleasant at its core, water managers take that very seriously when it comes to managing salt, or salinity, in the water supply. Water managers across California are responsible for providing a clean and safe drinking water supply, and salinity management plays a critical role in the quality of water that is provided to communities. While salt is composed of natural elements commonly found in soil and water, how is salinity managed to support a diversified water resource portfolio? 

Aquafornia news Press Telegram

Battle over Southern California water czar is clash between old vision and new, observers say

The most important thing to understand: If you’re reading this, you live in a desert. And you can live in this desert because politicians, scientists and engineers have moved mountains, almost literally, to bring you life-giving water. The latest brawl in Water World plays out on this backdrop, and what comes out of your tap may well depend on the result. Will it come from recycled waste water? Desalination plants? A giant tunnel or two under the Delta? The answers will, in large part, depend on who’s chosen to lead the gargantuan Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which provides water to 19 million people from Ventura County to the Mexican border. 

Aquafornia news San Clemente Times

Opinion: SCWD continues push for self-reliant water sources, desalination

How long could you last if water supply was cut off in the event of an emergency? Our region is nearly entirely reliant on water that is imported from hundreds of miles away. In the event of a catastrophe that would prevent water delivery from outside sources, experts recommend that there be at least 60 days’ worth of water supply. As of now, South Coast Water District could provide roughly 11 days’ worth.
-Written by Lillian Boyd.

Aquafornia news Idaho Falls Post Register

Opinion: When will major push to desalinate water in American Southwest begin?

As reality plays out, I continue to read how the drought in the American West is causing levels in Lake’s Mead and Powell to plummet. I also continue to see no action or accountability to take bold action to resolve the issue as uncontrolled development continues in the greater Phoenix and Las Vegas areas. … There are 17 desalination plants operating in California and the one in Carlsbad — the Claude Bud Lewis Desalination Plant — is the largest in the U.S. 
-Written by R.B. Provencher, a former manager for the U.S. Department of Energy and retired in Idaho Falls.

Aquafornia news Modesto Bee

Opinion: Bluetech workforce, desal could solve California water crises

Facing extended drought, diminishing snowpack, and depleted aquifers, California water managers face a harsh reality: our 20th century water systems – essentially linear designs in which fresh water is extracted, centrally treated, distributed to users, returned as wastewater, and finally treated and discarded – are breaking down. Although this approach has served us well for decades, we can no longer sustain ourselves with a paradigm that uses water once and throws it away.
-Written by Peter Fiske, a scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and executive director of the Department of Energy’s National Alliance for Water Innovation.

Aquafornia news CEQA Chronicles

Blog: Poseidon’s desalination plant’s supplemental EIR holds water according to the Court of Appeal

In California Coastkeeper v. State Lands Commission, the Third District Court of Appeal upheld the State Lands Commission’s decision to prepare a supplemental environmental impact report (EIR) for a desalination plant in Huntington Beach, overturning an earlier trial court ruling that invalidated the EIR. Limited changes to a desalination project were proposed in order to comply with desalination-related amendments to the State’s Ocean Plan.  

Aquafornia news SF Gate

East Bay water officials have eyes on the future

East Bay Municipal Utility District officials have seen droughts come and go. But they seem to be coming more frequently this century. Climate change is stoking devastating wildfire seasons year after year, drying the state out and just making it more flammable the following year. State water officials say that means less water in the Mokelumne River Watershed, the main source for EBMUD and its 1.4 million customers. Last winter was the state’s driest since 1977, prompting the district to officially declare a stage one drought on April 27 and ask customers to cut ten percent of their water use. What can the East Bay expect moving forward?

Aquafornia news Press Telegram

3 environmental groups take 3 positions on Poseidon desalination plant

Among attributes of the controversial Poseidon desalination plant proposed for Huntington Beach is the $1.5 million or so it would spend annually to keep the tidal inlet open at the Bolsa Chica wetlands, five miles up the coast from the project site. But as much as the money is needed there, the three non-profit groups dedicated to the wetlands’ preservation clash when it comes to support for the desalter plant. The state spent $151 million to create the inlet in 2006, restoring the estuary’s interaction with the ocean and revitalizing the wildlife habitat. The work has been a particular boon to the population and variety of birds.

Aquafornia news Law360

Calif. Appeals Court won’t halt desalination plant project

The California State Lands Commission properly reviewed a stalled desalination planned to be built on the coast south of Los Angeles, a state appeals court says. In a decision filed Saturday, the appeals court affirmed a lower court’s rejection of a challenge to the plant by the environmental group California Coastkeeper Alliance and others. It determined that a 2017 re-review of the planned desalination plant in Huntington Beach adequately complied with the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act. 

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Opinion: Drought-tolerant San Diego won’t go thirsty in the dry stretch ahead

San Diego takes droughts very seriously. That’s why the region is well-positioned to weather an extended dry spell with enough water.  Local officials don’t shrug at the drought conditions across the state that have triggered emergencies in a couple of northern counties. For one thing, the wildfire threat can be as dangerous here as anywhere. San Diego may be more drought-tolerant than in the past when it comes to water…

-Written by Michael Smolens

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Opinion: How San Diego County’s water supply investments protect our economy and quality of life from drought

Increasingly ominous signs suggest that we are entering another multiyear drought in California. The State Water Project recently reduced projected water deliveries for 2021 from 10 percent of requested supplies to 5 percent, and on April 21, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a regional drought emergency in the Russian River watershed in Northern California. But it’s a different story in San Diego County.

-Written by Gary Croucher, chair of the San Diego County Water Authority’s Board of Directors.

Aquafornia news Voice of OC

Will desalination come to Huntington Beach? A water board hearing happens today

Questions have been raised over California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s political maneuvers to push a controversial seawater desalination plant proposed for the Huntington Beach coastline. Critics say their concerns about the actual need for the project and its potential environmental effects remain. The company pushing it, Poseidon Water, remains steadfast in its intent to build a plant that would suck in 100 million gallons of seawater daily and make half of it drinkable….[The Regional Water Quality Control] board’s next hearing is scheduled for [Friday] April 23. If the board approves the permits, the project then goes for a final say from the state Coastal Commission. 

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

State regulators reject water petition because of status of petitioner

A former member of a Marina water advocacy group filed a motion with state regulators requesting a change in a water decision under the pretense of still being a member of the group, officials with the group say. In a letter emailed to the California Public Utilities Commission on Monday, Liesbeth Visscher, the chairwoman of Citizens for Just Water, and Lisa Berkley, one of the early members of the advocacy group, informed the commission that a request to change a CPUC decision, called a Petition for Modification, filed by Margaret-Anne Coppernoll under the guise of being a current member of the group was never authorized by the organization. In fact, Coppernoll hasn’t been a member of the group since 2017 …

Aquafornia news Science Times

Freshwater salt pollution: Is it threatening people and wildlife?

[A] study, titled “Freshwater Salinization Syndrome on a Continental Scale,” found at least a third of U.S. streams and rivers have become saltier over the last 25 years. On December 3, freshwater scientist John Olson of California State University, Monterey Bay, conducted a modeling study that validated these results, indicating that the future looks briny as well. The study is titled “Predicting Combined Effects of Land Use and Climate Change On River and Stream Salinity.” Salinization levels will likely increase by at least 50% in half of U.S. streams by 2100 if salt use persists at its current pace, according to Olson’s party. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Opinion: California law needs to catch up to sea level rise

[A]s massive a challenge as wildfire presents … a different climate crisis could rival it as a destroyer of the California dream: sea level rise. … AB 67 addresses state infrastructure. It would ensure that state agencies incorporate sea level rise estimates in the development of roads, ports, airports, water-treatment, desalination and power plants. In particular, it seeks to advance “natural infrastructure” such as restored estuaries, wetlands, dunes and sea grasses that could generate thousands of new “blue” jobs while reducing the impact of rising water at a lower cost than hardened structures such as seawalls. 
-Written by David Helvarg, an author and founder of Blue Frontier, an ocean conservation group.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Judge tells Monterey County to go back to the drawing board on Cal Am desal approval

Monterey County must rescind all approvals of California American Water’s proposed desalination project, per an order from a Monterey County Superior Court judge who earlier this year found the county violated the California Environmental Quality Act by approving the project without identifying a water source. The ruling was handed down April 3 by Judge Lydia Villarreal, who on Jan. 21 granted in part—and denied in part—a writ requested by the Marina Coast Water District regarding the 2019 approvals of the desal plant component of Cal Am’s Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project.

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Aquafornia news KSBW

Monterey County must rescind Cal-Am desal approvals

The Superior Court of California, County of Monterey has told Monterey County it must rescind all approvals for the Cal-Am desalination project. According to the court, the county violated the California Environmental Quality Act by approving the desal project with identifying a water source. The court ruling also means that the county can’t retroactively correct the issue.

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Aquafornia news Poseidon Water

News release: California Court of Appeal upholds state lands commission approval of Huntington Beach seawater desalination plant

Poseidon Water announced that the Third District California Court of Appeal issued a decision denying the petition by seawater desalination opponents to overturn the Sacramento County Superior Court’s 2019 ruling upholding the California State Lands Commission’s 2017 approval of an amended lease for the proposed Huntington Beach Desalination Project (“Project”). The Court of Appeal decision reaffirms that the State Lands Commission correctly analyzed the Project under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and that the Project protects the state’s Public Trust resources.

Aquafornia news California WaterBlog

Blog: Increasing groundwater salinity changes water and crop management over long timescales

Salinity has often become a major limit for irrigated agriculture in semi-arid regions, from ancient Mesopotamia to parts of California today. A previous blog post showed that conjunctive use with more saline groundwater can differ fundamentally from freshwater aquifers. Higher salinity limits groundwater use for irrigation during dry years, when less surface water is available to dilute groundwater salinity, and increases aquifer pumping in wetter years to avoid water-logging. Brackish groundwater can no longer serves as drought storage, but becomes a supplemental water supply in all years, limited by availability of fresh surface water for diluting salts. This greatly reduces groundwater’s ability to support permanent crops and increases variability in annual crop acreage across different water years, thus reducing profit.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

Taiwan’s drought pits chip makers against farmers

Chuang Cheng-deng’s modest rice farm is a stone’s throw from the nerve center of Taiwan’s computer chip industry, whose products power a huge share of the world’s iPhones and other gadgets. This year, Mr. Chuang is paying the price for his high-tech neighbors’ economic importance. Gripped by drought and scrambling to save water for homes and factories, Taiwan has shut off irrigation across tens of thousands of acres of farmland. … Officials are calling the drought Taiwan’s worst in more than half a century. And it is exposing the enormous challenges involved in hosting the island’s semiconductor industry, which is an increasingly indispensable node in the global supply chains for smartphones, cars and other keystones of modern life. Chip makers use lots of water to clean their factories and wafers, the thin slices of silicon that form the basis of the chips. 

Aquafornia news Voice of OC

Opinion: Governor Newsom needs to protect the human right to water not water privatizers

Governor Gavin Newsom frequently says California is a leader in sustainability and the transition away from fossil fuels. The governor has also issued an executive order to fight climate change in response to the deadly wildfires that ravaged our state last year. Despite these public statements and official efforts, it’s puzzling that his administration has been promoting the climate-wrecking Poseidon desalination plant in Huntington Beach as an infrastructure to source additional water for California. There are plenty of things we can do to ensure that Southern Californians have enough water to thrive…. 
-Written by Alejandro Sobrera, the Orange County Hub Coordinator for the Sunrise Movement, a youth led effort to bring about a just transition to a greener world.  

Aquafornia news WaterWorld

City of Camarillo selects Inframark to operate its new desalter plant

Inframark LLC, has entered into a five-year partnership with the City of Camarillo, Calif., for the operations and maintenance (O&M) of the City’s new $66.3 million North Pleasant Valley Desalter. On January 13, the City Council unanimously approved Inframark’s proposal over three other international competitors. Inframark will also assist in the startup and commissioning of the brackish water reverse osmosis facility, which is currently under construction and is expected to be up and running this fall.

Aquafornia news The Revelator

Blog: Stormwater could become an important water source — if we stopped ignoring it

Climate change and other environmental pressures are already putting the pinch on water resources in California, the Southwest and other arid parts of the world. Over-tapped groundwater, rivers and lakes are forcing water managers to find new supplies. Some of these can be costly, like treating wastewater for drinking water. Or they can come with a hefty price tag and outsized environmental footprint, like desalination or new dams. There’s another option on the table, though: stormwater. If we do the accounting right, runoff from precipitation is a cost-effective supplementary water resource, experts say. 

Aquafornia news The Log

Huntington Beach desalination plant hearings expected to resume in April

Hearings have been scheduled to resume in April for Poseidon Water’s controversial proposed Huntington Beach desalination plant. Last April the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Santa Ana Region was expected to vote on renewing a permit for the proposed $1 billion project but the workshop was canceled due to COVID-19. A hearing scheduled for September was also delayed so Poseidon could have more time to address water board concerns.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Editorial: Newsom right to boost Huntington Beach desalination facility

Opponents of a proposed desalination facility along the Huntington Beach coastline are aghast that Gov. Gavin Newsom has taken steps to help end a years-long regulatory logjam. Although an environmentalist, the governor clearly recognizes the importance of developing new water sources to meet California’s needs. Privately funded facilities plants that turn saltwater into drinking water aren’t the only solution to California’s water shortages, but they are one solution. For instance, a similar plant in Carlsbad has the capacity to meet 9 percent of San Diego County’s water needs. That’s an enormous contribution, especially with another drought looming.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Column: Desalination plan stinks all the way to Gov. Newsom’s office

[D]esalination may have a role to play in addressing California’s long-running water shortage issues. After all, we’ve got a 1,100-mile coastline in a drought-stricken state, and it’s only natural to think: Hey, let’s just stick a straw in the ocean, and our rabid thirst will be quenched once and for all. But desalination comes with many costs, including big hits to the environment and ratepayer pocketbooks. And as Susan Jordan, executive director of the California Coastal Protection Network, puts it, we need to temper our lust for what seems an easy fix.

Aquafornia news Times of San Diego

Opinion: San Diego’s successful desal plant should be a model for California water policy

Often the value of a plan or project can best be judged by its opposition. In the case of the proposed Poseidon desalination plant in Huntington Beach, the forces lined up against it are clear indicators that it’s a worthwhile enterprise. The Sierra Club calls the plant “rather pathetic,” “the most expensive and environmentally damaging way to secure Orange County’s future water supply.”
-Written by Kerry Jackson, a fellow in the Center for California Reform at the Pacific Research Institute. 

Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Fact check: Ad blasts Gavin Newsom on lobbyist connection

An ad running in Sacramento media funded by an environmental group starts with a provocative question about Gov. Gavin Newsom’s now infamous attendance at a party held at a swanky restaurant. “Just what was Gavin Newsom discussing at the French Laundry?” the ad asks. The ad doesn’t answer the question directly, but suggests the Democratic governor might have discussed a proposed Huntington Beach desalination plant with his lobbyist friend Jason Kinney, who hosted the event.

Aquafornia news Sierra Club Angeles Chapter

Blog: My experience as a water board director

I came to the little town of Ojai in Ventura county with a history of running municipal water conservation programs, most recently working with Pasadena Water and Power as a drought coordinator. We were at the end of a 6 year drought and I started working for Patagonia, a clothing company with a social and environmental ethic in Ventura, who hired me to review either ocean desalination or connecting to the state water project as water supply options. I recommended neither.

Aquafornia news East County Today

City of Antioch breaks ground on water project in Delta

On Friday,  the City of Antioch, along with local and State dignitaries, broke ground on their new and historic Brackish Water Desalination Plant. At a price of $110 million, the project was made possible with $93 million in funding from the State, and $17 million from the City of Antioch.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Tuesday Top of the Scroll: Newsom pushes private seawater desalting plant over local and environmental opposition

When Gov. Gavin Newsom was photographed dining at an opulent Napa Valley restaurant during a surge in coronavirus cases, many Californians saw it as hypocrisy. For opponents of a planned $1-billion desalination plant along the Orange County coast, however, the optics were menacing. The unmasked Newsom was celebrating the birthday of a lobbyist for Poseidon Water, which is close to obtaining final government approval for one of the country’s biggest seawater desalination plants. 

Aquafornia news California WaterBlog

Blog: Groundwater salinization in California’s Tulare Lake basin, the ABCSAL model

Lower groundwater levels can prevent drainage of water and salts from a basin and increase aquifer salinity that eventually renders the groundwater unsuitable for use as drinking water or irrigation without expensive desalination. Pauloo et al. (2021)  demonstrate this process for the Tulare Lake Basin (TLB) of California’s Central Valley. Even if groundwater pumping does not cause overdraft, it can cause hydrologic basin closure leading to progressive salinization that will not cease until the basin is opened by allowing natural or engineered exits for groundwater and dissolved salt. The process, “Anthropogenic Basin Closure and Groundwater Salinization (ABCSAL)”, is driven by human water management. 

Aquafornia news Daily Pilot

Wednesday Top of the Scroll: Tentative order released for controversial Poseidon water project

The Santa Ana Regional Water Board released a tentative order Friday detailing proposed revisions to Poseidon Water’s controversial proposed $1.4-billion water desalination project in Huntington Beach. The board’s tentative order would make Poseidon responsible for five mitigation projects, including four projects within the Bolsa Chica Wetlands and the restoration of a 41.5-acre rocky reef offshore of Palos Verdes. 

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Canadian utility proposes Salinas Valley desal project

A large Canada-based utility service company has unveiled a proposal to construct and operate a Moss Landing desalination plant using brackish water from wells at the mouth of the Salinas Valley. According to a Jan. 28 presentation by Liberty Utilities official Kim Adamson, the proposal calls for a desal plant capable of producing up to 32,000 acre-feet of drinking water per year at a cost of about $1,000 to $1,500 per acre-foot for Salinas, Castroville and Marina, and perhaps even eventually the Monterey Peninsula. 

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

After a resignation, Marina Coast Water District seeks applicants to fill a partial term

Marina Coast Water District is small but influential in local water issues, caught in the middle on various politically fraught issues.  For one, the water district—which is adjacent to California American Water’s service area, but not in it—has long been an antagonist to Cal Am. The one-time partners on a now-defunct desalination project have been embroiled in litigation over that former project for years. And Marina Coast has been an outspoken leader in opposition to Cal Am’s more recent proposed desalination project, fighting it since the earliest steps. 

Aquafornia news Marin Independent Journal

Opinion: Advanced metering, desalination would bolster water supply amid construction mandates

If the natural water supply doesn’t meet the water needs of an increased population, Marin is going to have to revisit the idea of building a desalination plant. Currently, the largest U.S. desalination plant in San Diego produces 50 million gallons daily at a cost of one cent per gallon. That cost is kept low given the San Diego’s plant is adjacent to a power station. If Marin had to draw its power from MCE or Pacific Gas and Electric Co., the cost would rise to 1.33 cents per gallon or $10 per billing unit over and above normal water charges. 
-Written by Rick Johnson, who worked 40 years with the San Francisco Water Department as a senior inspector and revenue recovery project manager.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Judge voids Monterey County approval of Cal Am desal plant project

A Monterey County Superior Court judge has set aside the county’s approval of California American Water’s desalination plant project over its rationale for why the project’s benefits would outweigh environmental impacts in a lawsuit brought by the Marina Coast Water District. At the same time, the judge rejected a bid by Marina Coast to require the county to conduct additional environmental review for the project as a result of new information and changed circumstances…

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: In defense of Marina Coast Water District

As a resident of Marina and the president of the Board of Directors of Marina Coast Water District, I feel it is very important to correct inaccurate statements provided by former Congressman Sam Farr. Yes, MCWD has needed to expend legal fees in the past few years; however, the bulk of those fees are to protect our precious water source from California American Water. Cal Am seeks to construct a desalination plant that will degrade our sole water supply source, groundwater… 
-Written by Jan Shriner, president of the Marina Coast Water District board of directors.

Aquafornia news Scientific American

Sunlight powers portable, inexpensive systems to produce drinking water

The U.S. Department of Energy will soon announce semifinalists for its Solar Desalination Prize. The goal: a system that produces 1,000 liters of usable water for $1.50… Such systems could surmount a big downside of reverse osmosis: it typically desalinates only half of the input saltwater, and the solution left behind eventually builds up enough salt to clog the membrane…

Aquafornia news Science Alert

New discovery could lead to cheaper and more efficient water desalination

Removing salt from seawater to make it safe to drink means overcoming a number of scientific challenges, including optimising the membrane used for the desalination process – and new research into these membranes promises to make the whole operation cheaper and more accessible in the future. Scientists have figured out a way of potentially making membranes 30-40 percent more efficient in terms of the energy required to filter water. 

Aquafornia news City News Service

Eastern Municipal Water District to receive $25M in federal funds

The Eastern Municipal Water District will receive $25 million in federal funds over the next several years to expand its desalination program, increasing fresh water stocks and reducing dependence on water imports, the agency announced Tuesday.

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Aquafornia news The Sacramento Bee

Opinion: Poseidon water project hurts CA taxpayers & environment

If Gov. Gavin Newsom can afford the $450 cost of having dinner at the exclusive French Laundry restaurant in Napa, he probably won’t bat an eye at increases in water bills like the ones residents in Orange County would experience due to Poseidon Water’s desalination project proposed in Huntington Beach. But for Californians on low and fixed-incomes, and those already suffering terribly from the health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, an unnecessary hike in water bills is a cruel and undeserved burden. Written by Andrea Leon-Grossman, climate action director at Azul, an organization working with Latinxs to conserve coasts and oceans.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Doheny desalination plan met with caution, delays

As it enters its 20th year of planning and preparation, a desalination plant proposed near Doheny State Beach continues to be met with delays and uncertainty. In mid-2018, officials were predicting that the operation could be turning ocean water into drinking water as soon as 2021. Now, the project will be doing well to simply win all required permits by the end of next year.

Aquafornia news Grand Junction Sentinel

Bureau of Reclamation looks to possible end of Paradox desalination project

A highly effective but problematic Colorado River desalination project in western Montrose County’s Paradox Valley could come to an end due to the federal Bureau of Reclamation’s difficulty finding an acceptable means of continuing it.

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Aquafornia news Laguna Beach Independent

South Coast Water District to receive $8.3M from feds for desalination project

South Coast Water District is set to receive an $8.3 million federal grant for the Doheny Ocean Desalination project secured during the previous round of funding, a district spokesperson said. The grant from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation was green lighted by Congress in 2019. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Poseidon would bring jobs and water to Orange County

Since 2012 we haven’t moved the state’s water policy too far forward. We now have a desalination plant successfully online in San Diego County and have instituted water-saving methods throughout the state. However, we are still facing a crisis with the ever-evaporating snowpack, a continuously warming climate and the reframing of the Delta tunnel project. And this might make for a good long political debate, but the reality of the situation is that most Californians do not have the luxury of time for a political debate — they have real-world needs, including the need to be able to provide water for their children to drink.
Written by Gloria Alvarado, executive director of the Orange County Labor Federation. 

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Opinion: Governor’s talk on environment falls short when it comes to the Poseidon project

Orange County sees past Poseidon’s efforts to buy support for its desalination boondoggle. Why can’t Gov. Newsom? … Based on Newsom’s 2019 Water Resilience Portfolio, you’d think the governor would be highly skeptical of the Poseidon project. 
-Written by Garry Brown, founding director of Orange County Coastkeeper.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

$15 million credit line will help Antioch build desalination plant

Antioch’s plan to build a desalination plant to clear up the city’s brackish water got another boost this week when the City Council unanimously approved $15 million in interim financing.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

State water penalty kicks in as Cal Am misses deadline on desalination plant construction

A recent exchange of letters between a public utility and a state water authority highlights the continued stalemate in the effort by the Monterey Peninsula to develop a new water supply and end the overdrafting of the Carmel River.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Election 2020: Pure Water Monterey expansion hangs in balance

With the future of the much-debated Pure Water Monterey expansion proposal hanging on a single vote, the hotly contested Del Rey Oaks City Council race has taken on regional significance.

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Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Cal Am re-files desal project application with Coastal Commission

California American Water has re-filed its desalination project permit application less than two months after withdrawing it on the eve of a special Coastal Commission meeting. While the company made changes to its desal project proposal in the re-filed application, it has not yet met with Marina city officials to resolve the issues prompting the city to oppose the project.

Related articles:

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Desal, public buyout at center of Monterey Peninsula Water District board race

It’s little surprise California American Water’s proposed desalination project and the fate of a public buyout effort aimed at acquiring the company’s local water system are at the core of the contests for two seats on the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District board of directors…

Aquafornia news KCLU

Santa Barbara, Montecito set to make historic 50-year water deal official

The Montecito Water District is buying into Santa Barbara’s desalination plant, which converts salt water into fresh water. The deal calls for Montecito to pick up $33 million dollars of the recently rebuilt plant’s $72 million dollar price tag, as well as to share in operational costs.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Carlsbad lagoon dredging starts soon

Seawater desalination operator Poseidon is poised to take over the Agua Hedionda Lagoon maintenance dredging that has been done by local power companies since 1954. Permits are being obtained for the work to begin in November or early December with expectations to finish by mid-April…

Aquafornia news CalMatters

Opinion: Desalination plant in Orange County will help ensure clean drinking water

California is facing an impending water shortage. With widespread fires, a COVID-19 provoked economic recession bringing widespread unemployment and a public health emergency, it would be easy, but not prudent, to forget that we face a water crisis around the next corner.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Cal Am, Marina open to meeting on desal project ‘solution’

California American Water and Marina city officials are in the process of setting up talks on the company’s desalination project after exchanging letters over the past several weeks.

Aquafornia news

Desalination plant a flashpoint in West Basin District 3 race

Three candidates are competing for one seat on the West Basin Municipal Water District board of directors, and an ambitious plan for a water desalination plant off the coast of El Segundo emerges as a major flashpoint.

Aquafornia news Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment

Desalination’s role in a circular water economy

While use of large seawater desalination plants will continue to be limited to coastal communities, small-scale, localized systems for distributed desalination will be essential to cost-effectively tapping and reusing many of these nontraditional water sources across the country.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Support of Poseidon’s desalination at stake in water board election

For years, the Orange County Water District has expressed interest in buying the desalted water, provided Poseidon receives the necessary regulatory permits. But the water district’s appetite for the controversial project could be in jeopardy after Nov. 3, if two board members who support the project are upset in their reelection bids and replaced by Poseidon skeptics.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: The desal project is much needed

It would be an understatement to say our community has a lot on its plate these days. Between the wildfires, COVID-19 and its impact on human lives, not to mention our local economy, it’s hard to imagine having more issues requiring our focus. And yet one of the most important issues facing our community – our water supply – is in a critical stage and needs public engagement and attention.

Aquafornia news CalMatters

Opinion: Orange County desalination project doesn’t pencil out

Unfortunately, some Wall Street water companies are trying to take advantage of California’s drought fears by pushing through overpriced and unnecessary water projects. Poseidon Water Co. is one of those companies. Poseidon has been working for years to build a seawater desalination plant in Orange County, seeking a deal that would lock the local utility into buying their water for decades, regardless of need.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion:  Water supply – the testimony that never was

Last week on these pages, you heard the President of California American Water explain their rationale for withdrawing their application for a desalination plant from the California Coastal Commission the day before their Sept. 17 hearing. What he didn’t tell you is that there is a feasible alternative project that has less environmental impact, is more socially just, and would be less costly to ratepayers

Aquafornia news Voice of Orange County

Will Gov. Newsom replace Poseidon desal project critic on Orange County regional water board?

There are mounting questions over whether Gov. Gavin Newsom will replace William von Blasingame — an Irvine resident first appointed to the regulatory seat in 2013 by former governor Jerry Brown — when his current term on the Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board expires Sept. 30, ahead of his panel’s vote on the Poseidon Water Co.’s desalination proposal.

Aquafornia news Times of San Diego

Lawsuit alleges water authority failed to deliver desalinated water to San Marcos

The Vallecitos Water District in San Marcos filed a lawsuit Thursday alleging the San Diego County Water Authority overcharged by nearly $6 million for desalinated water that was never delivered, despite an agreement to construct a pipeline for that exact purpose.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: Explaining California American Water’s decision to withdraw desalination application

After years spent developing this project and making adjustments to respond to stakeholder concerns, it became obvious that we needed to take more time to address objections raised by the community of Marina — namely that our project would be built in their backyard without them receiving any benefit from it.

Related articles:

Aquafornia news Voice of Orange County

Conservationists split over Poseidon desal project’s potential to help Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Along a Huntington Beach coastline dotted with oil rigs and a power plant, one of California’s largest remaining saltwater marshes has been a source of pride for local environmentalists. But the marsh, known as the Bolsa Chica Wetlands, is endangered despite a years-long struggle to pull together sufficient public funding for its upkeep.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Thursday Top of the Scroll: Cal Am withdraws desal project bid

California American Water has withdrawn its Peninsula desalination project bid at the Coastal Commission on the eve of the commission’s special meeting, citing social and environmental justice issues.

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Aquafornia news Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board

News release: Santa Ana Water Board delays decision on Orange County desalination project

The Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board, which was expected to make a decision Sept. 17 on the waste discharge permit renewal for a proposed seawater desalination facility in Orange County, has postponed action for several weeks at the request of the applicant. Poseidon Waters, the company that plans to build the $1 billion plant on 12 acres of the AES Huntington Beach Generating Station, requested additional time to address concerns raised in three days of public hearings…

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Fight over desalinization is now about environmental justice

This proposal by California American Water has become one of the most complicated and fraught issues to come before the California Coastal Commission, whose long-awaited vote on Thursday could determine not only the contentious future of water on the Monterey Peninsula — but also the role of government in undoing environmental inequity.

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Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: Moving toward water supply security

The Monterey Peninsula is about to find out if a long-term water supply will become a reality on Thursday as California’s Coastal Commission is scheduled to hear the application for a permit to build the desalination source water wells. The Farm Bureau believes the permit is necessary to secure a reliable water supply for Peninsula residents and businesses.

Related article:

Aquafornia news CalMatters

Opinion: Desal plant on Monterey Peninsula is not the best option

Expansion of the Pure Water Monterey recycled water project is the best option for the Monterey region to meet its future water supply needs. Unfortunately, California American Water Co., a private water supplier, is discrediting the project in hopes of getting approval for their much more costly, oversized and environmentally harmful groundwater desalination project…

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Coastal Commission staff again advises desal project denial

Nine months after the Coastal Commission conducted its first hearing on California American Water’s proposed desalination project, commission staff has again recommended denial of the project in favor of a Pure Water Monterey expansion proposal.

Aquafornia news Santa Barbara Independent

Opinion: Desalination is not the panacea

In response to Eberhard Brunner’s recent “Water in the West” op-ed, I’d like to share some facts about the true costs of desalinated water.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: Some losers in water project

In his Aug. 2 Herald commentary, Grant Leonard claimed that Cal Am’s proposed Monterey Peninsula Water Supply Project would be a win-win for both Castroville, a disadvantaged community, and Carmel, which is on the other side of the economic spectrum. Some things challenge that claim.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Monday Top of the Scroll: Poseidon’s desalination plan for Huntington Beach delayed again

The Regional Water Quality Control Board concluded three days of hearings on the project’s next permit by telling Poseidon it must return with a more robust, more detailed mitigation plan to offset the environmental damage the project will cause.

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Aquafornia news Santa Barbara News-Press

City council discusses grant for desalination plant

The Santa Barbara City Council unanimously passed a motion Tuesday to introduce and subsequently adopt an ordinance authorizing a grant funding agreement with the State Department of Water Resources in the amount of $10 million for reactivation of the Charles E. Meyer Desalination Plant.

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Poseidon’s Huntington Beach desalination plant still in choppy waters

As Poseidon Water pursues the final government approvals needed to build one of the country’s biggest seawater desalination plants, the company still cannot definitively say who will buy the 50 million gallons a day of drinking water it wants to produce on the Orange County coast. That’s one of several questions that continue to dog the $1-billion Huntington Beach project…

Related article:

Aquafornia news Noozhawk

Santa Barbara council accepts $10 million grant to operate desalination plant

The Santa Barbara City Council voted 7-0 on Tuesday to accept a $10 million grant — with the understanding that it will run the plant at full capacity for at least 36 out of the next 40 years. Some environmentalists objected to the council’s decision, citing environmental concerns.

Aquafornia news Voice of Orange County

Questions over water official who took money from interests pushing desal project she’s voting on

Regional water board member Kris Murray is on track later this week to vote on a controversial desalination plant sponsored by a company and interest groups she took money from during past political campaigns.

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Aquafornia news Camarillo Acorn

$5M in federal funding granted for city’s desalter

The grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation will be used for the desalter plant that will treat brackish groundwater from the nearby Pleasant Valley Groundwater Basin. The filtered water will account for 40% of the city’s overall water supply once the facility is finished.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Poseidon desalination proposal for Huntington Beach may face new requirements

After hearings this week for one of two remaining major permits needed for the project, several members of the Regional Water Quality Control Board indicated they were dissatisfied with the proposed mitigation for the larvae and other small marine life that would die as a result of the plant’s ocean intake pipes.

Related article:

Aquafornia news

Thirsty? This costly plant could let you drink the Pacific

Poseidon Resources wants to build a $1.4 billion desalination plant near a power plant that is about to be shut down. They say it could produce 50 million gallons of water per day, enough for about 100,000 Orange County homes. Friday marked the second day of hearings before the Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board. Its approval is needed for the plant to discharge salty brine left over from the treated water.

Aquafornia news Voice of Orange County

Public argues for, against Huntington Beach desalination plant, decision near

The 20-year battle between seawater desalters and Orange County environmentalists and community activists neared a turning point Thursday, the first in a series of final public hearings around a Huntington Beach desalination plant proposal before local regulators. Hearings and public comments at the state regional water board started Thursday, are continuing today…

Aquafornia news Los Angeles Times

Controversial Poseidon desalination plant in Huntington Beach set for hearings this week

Poseidon Water’s seawater desalination plant in Huntington Beach, first proposed in 1998, could be getting closer to beginning construction after more than two decades. The Santa Ana Regional Water Board will hold online hearings this week and decide whether to issue Poseidon a permit.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Tuesday Top of the Scroll: Poseidon’s desalination plant faces day of reckoning

After more than 20 years of developing plans for a Huntington Beach desalination plant and winding its way through a seemingly endless bureaucratic approval process, Poseidon Water comes to a key juncture as the Regional Water Quality Control Board votes on whether to grant a permit after hearings this week.

Aquafornia news PR Newswire

News release: Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board staff recommends approval of permit for Huntington Beach desal project

On Wednesday, the Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board issued a staff report recommending approval of a tentative order making amendments to and renewing its operating permit first issued in 2006 for the proposed Huntington Beach Desalination Project.

Related article:

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Polls show public support for 2 Orange County desalination proposals

Public support for proposed desalination plants in Huntington Beach and Dana Point appears strong in two recent polls, although opponents call the surveys biased and say neither poll addresses key obstacles facing these very different projects.

Aquafornia news Metropolitan Water District of Southern California

News release: Metropolitan approves funding of two local supply projects

In separate actions Tuesday, Metropolitan’s Board of Directors voted to provide $115 million to the San Diego County Water Authority and its project partners for water produced by the East County Advanced Water Purification Project in Santee and the Escondido Filtration Reverse Osmosis Facility.

Aquafornia news Treatment Plant Operator Magazine

Stanford researchers design a more efficient, affordable desalination process

Taking a new approach to an old problem, Stanford researchers have created a device that could make converting seawater to freshwater profitable and environmentally benign.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Cal Am responds to desal opposition in Coastal Commission letter

California American Water officials are defending the company’s proposed desalination project in response to the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District’s move last month to formally oppose it at the Coastal Commission in favor of a proposed recycled water expansion.

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Aquafornia news Voices of Monterey Bay

Opinion: Cal Am is blocking the Pure Water Monterey expansion

It seems some are willing to wait forever for a new water supply. After 25 years of failure, they still trust Cal Am to come up with a solution. But the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District is clearly done waiting. Last Monday, the district board withdrew its support for Cal Am’s proposed desal plant.

Aquafornia news Noozhawk

Montecito Water District board approves new rates, supply agreement with Santa Barbara

The Montecito Water District took a major step forward to improve long-term water supply security and reliability during a special meeting on Thursday. The water district Board of Directors voted unanimously to adopt a resolution approving a 50-year water supply agreement between the MWD and the City of Santa Barbara.

Aquafornia news KGO TV

As potential mega-drought looms, Stanford researchers explore desalination system

Researchers at Stanford are working on a technology that may be needed more than ever over the next decade, especially if new predictions are accurate. … “To us, desalination is kind of the wave of the future,” says Stanford researcher William Tarpeh, Ph.D. Tarpeh and colleagues have been refining a technology that could eventually make widespread desalination cheaper, and safer for the environment.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey Peninsula water district board opposes Cal Am desal project

For the first time, the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District has formally expressed opposition to the California American Water desalination project, backing the proposed Pure Water Monterey recycled water project expansion instead… At the same time, the district took another step toward potential acquisition of Cal Am’s Monterey water system with the release of a draft environmental impact report on the proposed public buyout effort.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Water district calls on Coastal Commission to deny Cal Am’s desalination permit

To a large extent, the fate of several multi-million dollar water projects on the Monterey Peninsula is in the hands of the California Coastal Commission. The question is whether the commission will grant a development permit for a desalination plant proposed by California American Water…

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Equal representation on a critical water board is denied due to political fighting

Thousands of people in Marina are being blocked from full representation on the board of a regional water agency, a casualty of a larger battle over the water future of the Monterey Peninsula.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Alternative desalination project to be studied for Doheny Beach

With its proposed Doheny desalination plant facing hurdles because of costs and a lack of partner water districts, the South Coast Water District board has agreed to spend $73,000 to study a scaled-down alternative.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Pure Water Monterey expansion remains afloat

A Pure Water Monterey expansion proposal has narrowly survived another attempt to shelve it indefinitely even as the main recycled water project struggles with operational and cost issues that have further postponed its water delivery date and hampered its capacity.

Aquafornia news The Log

Poseidon Water’s desalination plan: Are there cracks in the armor?

Marine life mitigation, the need for desalinated water in Orange County and the overall merits of Poseidon Water’s plan to build a $1 billion desalination plant in Huntington Beach were some of the main talking points of a 10-hour virtual workshop, held on May 15. Highlighting the marathon of a workshop: pointed questions about the merits of Poseidon’s proposal…

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Activists’ plan to filibuster Monterey One Water meeting is scuttled by a leak

Over email, local water activists concocted a secret plan to derail a vote that would potentially kill one water project and bolster the prospects of another. The idea was to stage a “filibuster” of the Monterey One Water board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 26.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Regulators express concerns about Huntington Beach desalination project

The Poseidon desalination plant proposed for Huntington Beach could be facing rough waters ahead, as several regulatory officials on Friday expressed concerns over the controversial plan.. During a Regional Water Quality Control Board workshop held online, three of the agency’s six board members persistently pressed local officials about the need, consumer cost and environmental harm of the $1 billion project.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: Pure Water Monterey expansion proposal falls short

The board of Monterey One Water recently voted not to certify a supplemental environmental impact report (SEIR) for an expansion of Pure Water Monterey. While the expansion was a technical concept that might provide additional water for the Peninsula, the Board action injected some much-needed clear thinking and foresight into a critical topic for the Monterey Peninsula.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Opinion: How to waste $1 billion in less than a minute

Why would a public agency support an unnecessary and risky billion-dollar desalination plant and let a private utility profit hundreds of millions of dollars at the public’s expense? Here’s the story.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Monterey Peninsula Water District calls for revisiting Pure Water Monterey expansion report

Monterey Peninsula Water Management District officials have requested the Monterey One Water board certify the Pure Water Monterey expansion project supplemental environmental impact report within 30 days and is withholding more than $600,000 representing part of its share of the environmental review.

Aquafornia news WaterWorld

DOE launches $9M desalination prize

Today, the U.S. Department of Energy announced the launch of the $9 million American-Made Challenges: Solar Desalination Prize, a competition to accelerate the development of systems that use solar-thermal energy to produce clean water from very-high-salinity water.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Pure Water Monterey expansion environmental report rejected

A proposed Pure Water Monterey expansion at the center of a contentious debate over the future of the Monterey Peninsula’s water supply hit a huge roadblock on Monday night, leaving its future in serious doubt.

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Aquafornia news CBS 8

2nd crew begins work at Carlsbad desalination plant amid COVID-19 pandemic

A 10-person crew is in the midst of a three-week shelter-in-place shift at the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plant, relieving an initial crew that self-quarantined on site for three weeks to continue producing clean drinking water for county residents amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aquafornia news SJV Water

Blog: Price of reclaimed water still too high for ag

If you’re a Central Valley farmer and haven’t yet been hit up by someone about reusing crummy water for irrigation — just wait. Companies are springing up all over with the latest gizmo they believe will take nasty, salty water, mostly from shallow aquifers on the valley’s west side or oilfield produced water, and make clean “new” irrigation water.

Aquafornia news East County Today

Antioch to receive $27 million settlement from California’s Department of Water Resources

The agreement pays Antioch $27 million, which guarantees that they will be able to utilize its 150-year old water rights and remain in the Delta for the long-term. The $27 million, in addition to $43 million in State grants and loans, completes the financing for the $70m Brackish Water Desalination Plant.

Aquafornia news Bay Area Monitor

The future of water: Onsite desalination for hyperlocal reuse

The basics of the relationship between water and energy are well known, but California’s recent drought revealed something surprising about this connection. When the state mandated a 25 percent drop in water use, the resulting energy savings turned out to be even higher than expected. This prompted the Department of Energy to find ways of making water more energy efficient.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Monday Top of the Scroll: Coronavirus: Carlsbad desal plant workers begin shelter-in-place to keep the water on

As of Friday, 10 workers are quarantined inside the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Desalination Plan for the next three weeks, monitoring and adjusting gauges and switches, watching for leaks, and doing whatever is needed to safeguard San Diego County’s only significant local source of drinking water. … The “mission critical” employees will work 12-hour shifts, sleep in rented recreational vehicles in the parking lot, and be resupplied with fresh food left for them at the plant’s gate.

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Aquafornia news UC Irvine News

Blog: Driven for desalinization

Fresh water shortages have made desalination a possible solution for supplementing the overall water supply. To address this issue, a team of industry professionals and researchers have formed National Alliance of Water and Innovation to jointly examine the critical technical barriers and research needed to lower the energy cost of desalination and other water processing methods.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

One idea, two cool things: desalinated water and renewable energy

The contraption, reminiscent of Rube Goldberg, would produce two of Southern California’s most precious and essential resources: water and electricity. … The idea, developed by Silicon Valley-based Neal Aronson and his Oceanus Power & Water venture, caught the attention of the Santa Margarita Water District. The agency quickly saw the project’s viability to fill a void.

Aquafornia news WBUR

Driven by climate change, desalination researchers seek solutions to water scarcity

Extracting salt from water seems like an easy fix to a global problem, but the process of desalination can be expensive, and it can also have a huge impact on the environment. That’s why some researchers are looking into how to lower the cost and improve efficiency.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Cal Am gets Coastal Commission desal project extension

California American Water has received a 90-day extension of the deadline for the Coastal Commission to consider the company’s desalination project permit application, effectively allowing commission staff about four more months to complete additional analysis.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

California Coastal Commission staff asks Cal Am to postpone desal appeal

Coastal Commission staff has recommended California American Water withdraw and resubmit a coastal development permit application involving the company’s proposed Monterey Peninsula desalination project, which would likely postpone a hearing on the desal permit and a pending appeal until September at the earliest.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Proposed settlement reached in regional desal lawsuit

Eight years after the regional desalination project fell apart, the legal battle over its unraveling appears to be nearing a conclusion. A proposed settlement has been reached among the parties involved… It was presented on Monday in the San Francisco Superior Court overseeing the long-running lawsuit.

Aquafornia news CALmatters

Opinion: California must include desalination in water portfolio

Understanding why desalination is so critical to California’s water future is a lot like building a personal budget. With a changing climate, growing population and booming economy, we need to include desalination in the water supply equation to help make up an imported water deficit.

Aquafornia news Dana Point Times

Talking desalination dollars

South Coast Water District will gear up to undertake its next milestone for desalination: financing the project. On Thursday, Jan. 9, after press time, General Manager Rick Shintaku requested authorization from SCWD’s Board of Directors to enter into an agreement with Clean Energy Capital to conduct a cost analysis for the proposed desalination project.

Aquafornia news CALmatters

Opinion: Coastal Commission should approve CalAm desalination plant

Nobody likes to look out to the Pacific Ocean and see oil derricks on the horizon. That’s why California wisely banned new offshore oil drilling 50 years ago. But in Monterey County, coastal views are limited by a relic of a bygone era: a giant, industrial sand plant right on the dunes between Highway One and the ocean.

Aquafornia news Popular Mechanics

Water desalination just got a lot better

A mechanical engineer at Carnegie Mellon University has developed a new, micro-thin material to make membrane water desalination even better. Amir Barati Farimani, with fellow researchers Zhonglin Cao and Vincent Liu, has calculated how much better his metal organic framework (MOF) works than the traditional membrane method.

Aquafornia news Orange County Register

Huntington Beach desalination plant eyes approval, but foes turn out in force

With Poseidon Water’s plans for a Huntington Beach desalination plant approaching the homestretch, critics were as adamant as ever at a Friday workshop, where dozens complained the proposal is environmentally flawed, unneeded and would jack up water rates.

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Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

With the future of the Monterey Peninsula’s water supply—and water utility—on the line, we take a look back at how we got here

There’s a war over the future of water on the Monterey Peninsula and it’s taking place in the board chambers of half a dozen state and local government entities. It’s also taking place on social media and in the press.

Aquafornia news Daily Pilot

Opinion: Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Plant will receive $585 million in credit assistance

Orange County has long been recognized as a worldwide leader for developing state-of-the-art, environmentally sensitive new water supply technology, and we are not resting on our laurels. … This month, it was announced that the Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Plant will receive $585 million in credit assistance under the EPA’s WIFIA program.

Aquafornia news The San Diego Union-Tribune

Bi-national conference tackles border region’s water issues

A bi-national conference at San Diego State University was aimed at analyzing water resources in the Baja California and San Diego border region where challenges include cross-border pollution and water scarcity… Experts at the Reborder 2019 conference discussed ways to improve regional access to “a secure and reliable water supply” through wastewater treatment and desalination.

Aquafornia news Torrance Daily Breeze

West Basin approves desalination-plant impact report — while dozens of foes stand against it

West Basin Municipal Water District took the next steps Monday toward building a desalination facility in El Segundo, a project that has drawn fierce opposition from conservation groups — including some who staged a rally before the meeting.

Aquafornia news Palo Alto Online

With new deal, Palo Alto banks on recycled water for drought protection

Seeking to fortify the city against future droughts, the Palo Alto City Council endorsed on Monday a long-term agreement with Santa Clara Valley Water District and Mountain View to build a salt-removal plant in the Baylands and then transfer the treated wastewater south.

Aquafornia news Torrance Daily Breeze

West Basin Municipal Water District to weigh proposed desalination plant in El Segundo

A proposed desalination plant in El Segundo could soon be one step closer to reality. The West Basin Municipal Water District will hold a special meeting in Carson on Monday, Nov. 18, where the board will weigh whether to certify an Environmental Impact Report for the proposal. … The board has not yet selected a company to build the proposed plant, which could cost more than $400 million.

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Aquafornia news Voices of Monterey Bay

Coastal Commission staff wants more study of desal impact

Cal Am Water’s experts may have seriously underestimated the potential impact the company’s proposed desalination plant would have on the existing water supply nearby, the staff of the California Coastal Commission concluded in a report released this week as a supplement to its exhaustive report on the overall project.

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Aquafornia news ABC News Bakersfield

California health: Can desalinated water help Kern County’s water needs?

If California goes into another drought and Kern County needs an extra supply of water, Santa Barbara is open to partnering with communities like Kern County. “We’re able to do exchanges with people, so you could in theory have someone in the Central Valley be a partner in desal,” said Joshua Haggmark, water resource manager for Santa Barbara.

Aquafornia news KSBW TV

Editorial: Desal – No sale

Now is the time to focus on Pure Water Monterey and scrap the desal plans. If 10 years from now the recycled water project doesn’t do the trick, and there’s still a need for a desal plant, we can be optimistic that future advances in technology will make any desal option more environmentally-friendly and less expensive.

Aquafornia news Discover Magazine

Why desalinating water is hard — and why we might need to anyway

In places like San Diego and Dubai, where freshwater is scarce, humans turn to machines that pull the salt out of seawater, transforming it into clean drinking water. … Many researchers are working to improve the technology so it can reach more people — and address climate change without contributing to it.

Aquafornia news Stanford School of Engineering

Q&A: How do we develop new sources of usable water?

Late last month, the U.S. Department of Energy announced a $100 million research grant to the National Alliance for Water Innovation (NAWI) to lead an Energy-Water Desalination Hub. Meagan Mauter explains how this very large and potentially transformative project will work, and Stanford’s role in the work.

Aquafornia news Santa Barbara Independent

Montecito thirsting for new water source

After years of negotiations, the Montecito Water District is closing in on a deal to buy 1,430 acre-feet of water from the City of Santa Barbara, every year for the next 50 years. … The city would produce the extra supply at its $72 million desalination plant, at a yearly cost to Montecito of $4.3 million.

Aquafornia news Salinas Californian

Central Coast plan to shift water to wealthier areas meets protest

Activists and local government officials across Monterey County have banded together to fight a proposed desalination plant that could double the cost of water for some residents and endanger an aquifer that serves low-income communities.

Aquafornia news The New York Times

The world can make more water from the sea, but at what cost?

Desalinated seawater is the lifeblood of Saudi Arabia, no more so than at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, an international research center that rose from the dry, empty desert a decade ago. … Desalination provides all of the university’s fresh water, nearly five million gallons a day. But that amount is just a tiny fraction of Saudi Arabia’s total production.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Area elected officials back anti-desal project letter

Touting a shift in local politics and a preferable alternative, more than two dozen area elected officials signed on to a letter to the Coastal Commission calling for denial of the California American Water desalination project.

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Aquafornia news Torrance Daily Breeze

West Basin Municipal Water District presents El Segundo desalination plant to Manhattan Beach leaders for the first time

The final environmental study for a proposed desalination plant in El Segundo will soon be released, the City Council for adjacent Manhattan Beach learned this week, when it received its first formal presentation on the potential project — even though the West Basin Municipal Water District first pitched the plant in 2015.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Court ruling pauses Cal Am desal plant project

A Monterey County Superior Court judge has called a halt to work on the California American Water desalination plant project, at least temporarily, while a California Coastal Commission appeal challenging the project’s source wells is pending.

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Aquafornia news Voices of Monterey Bay

Opinion: Cal Am looks to the future

While cities on the Monterey Peninsula have been working to address housing needs and the business community is actively looking to create more jobs, there is one component they all need to complete their plans – reliable, drought-proof access to water.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Pure Water Monterey project nears finish line with ceremony

The project is the first of its kind to tap agricultural run-off among a variety of wastewater sources for conversion into potable, drinking water that would represent about a third of the Monterey Peninsula’s new drinking water supply.

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Aquafornia news Voices of Monterey Bay

Opinion: Public water now

Over 30 years, Cal Am’s Desal would cost $1.2 billion while the Pure Water Monterey expansion would be only $190 million. But the cost in dollars is not the only comparison that should be made. The environmental cost comparison is also dramatic.

Aquafornia news San Jose Mercury News

$100 million desalination project to be led by Berkeley Lab

In an effort to widen the use of a nearly limitless — but expensive — source of water for California and other places worldwide that are prone to shortages, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has been selected to lead a $100 million project aimed at bringing down the cost of desalination.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Monterey Peninsula chief water counter says planned desalination plant far outpaces water demand

The Monterey Peninsula has gotten so good at conserving water that there is no need to build a costly desalination plant for decades – even if the region experiences unprecedented growth – according to a report from the top executive at the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District.

Aquafornia news Orange County Breeze

Report on Poseidon desalination plant in Carlsbad shows poor performance and high costs

The San Diego County Water Authority’s 2019 fiscal year report on the Carlsbad ocean desalination plant shows poor performance at the facility. According to the report, Poseidon paid a penalty of almost $2 million for non-delivery of water, reaffirming concerns around affordability and reliability raised by community advocates …

Western Water California Water Map Gary Pitzer

Often Short of Water, California’s Southern Central Coast Builds Toward A Drought-Proof Supply
WESTERN WATER NOTEBOOK: Water agencies in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo counties look to seawater, recycled water to protect against water shortages

The spillway at Lake Cachuma in central Santa Barbara County. Drought in 2016 plunged its storage to about 8 percent of capacity.The southern part of California’s Central Coast from San Luis Obispo County to Ventura County, home to about 1.5 million people, is blessed with a pleasing Mediterranean climate and a picturesque terrain. Yet while its unique geography abounds in beauty, the area perpetually struggles with drought.

Indeed, while the rest of California breathed a sigh of relief with the return of wet weather after the severe drought of 2012–2016, places such as Santa Barbara still grappled with dry conditions.

Aquafornia news Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory

Blog: New $100m innovation hub to accelerate R&D for a secure water future

The Hub will focus on early-stage research and development for energy-efficient and cost-competitive desalination technologies and for treating nontraditional water sources for various end uses.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Report: Peninsula may not need desal for two more decades

Reaction has been predictably mixed to a new report that concludes the Monterey Peninsula may be able to get by with recycled water instead of desalinated water for the next two decades and perhaps beyond.

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Aquafornia news Ventura County Star

Camarillo officials celebrate groundbreaking for desalter plant

The groundbreaking ceremony was decades in the making for the North Pleasant Valley Groundwater Desalter Plant, which aims to convert brackish water from the Calleguas Creek watershed into potable water for the city of Camarillo.

Aquafornia news Monterey Herald

Pure Water Monterey recycled water project delays continue

Completion and operation of the much-anticipated Pure Water Monterey recycled water project have been delayed again and it is now expected to miss another key water delivery deadline set for the end of this year.

Aquafornia news Monterey County Weekly

Supreme Court won’t consider Marina’s challenge to Cal Am desalination plant

With every passing week, California American Water clears more hurdles as it sets out to build a desalination plant near Marina. The most recent victory for the proponents of the $329 million project came on Aug. 28 at the California Supreme Court.