The Irvine Ranch Water District's opposition to Poseidon's Huntington Beach desalination plant is troubling in that it ignores the facts: Orange County is 50% dependent on imported water from the Sierra Snowpack (at a 5
00 year low) and the Colorado River (at its lowest deliveries in history); El Nino didn't work, climate scientists are still predicting a "megadrought" for our part of the world which could last a decade, and Orange County's population will grow by 300,000 by 2020. We need the 50 Million Gallons a Day (MGD) of local drought proof water Poseidon can provide for the County.
In assessing the cost of desalinated water it is essential to understand that under the Poseidon Orange County Water District (OCWD) Term Sheet: the water would cost less than penny a gallon to produce; rate payer increase would be less than $3 (less than a latte at Starbucks); and the cost of imported water, if it is available, will continue to rise.
As OCWD's executive director of engineering put it: "It really boils down to how reliable you think imported water will be in the future"; a gamble the County cannot afford to take.
Robert H. Sulnick Executive Director OC WISE (Orange County Water Independence Sustanabitly & Efficiency) Orange, CA