Ed Bedford 11:44 p.m., June 19
Slow it down
Group offers more reasons to delay vote on Carlsbad desalinization plant
Add the California Coastal Protection Network to the list of names including the San Diego chapter of the Surfrider Foundation and various local water districts questioning the wisdom of pushing forth on a vote to approve a proposed desalinization plant in Carlsbad, currently scheduled to take place tomorrow.
The plant, which would be built by Poseidon Resources Inc., could produce up to 50 million gallons of potable fresh water daily for use throughout the county. The upfront cost, however, would be considerably more than what the water authority in Los Angeles is currently charging San Diego ratepayers, although proponents say it would be a step toward regional water independence in the face of proposed rate hikes from the current supplier.
An issue previously raised suggesting the November 29 vote might be premature is the fact that a thorough cost-benefit analysis study on the plant won’t be available until sometime next year. Further, the Network points out in a letter issued in conjunction with Surfrider, a ruling on a challenge to Poseidon’s National Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit is expected from an appeals court within the next 120 days. Potential rulings could complicate or place in jeopardy the construction process.
A letter from the Network urges delay, asking “why there is a big rush to vote on the WPA when pertinent information is just around the corner.”