CA desalination building project underway, to create 50 million gallons of drinking water per day

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HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA, June 14, 2013 -- Poseidon Resources' application for a Coastal Development Permit of a proposed seawater desalination plant in Huntington Beach, Calif., is complete, determined by California Coastal Commission staff.

The Huntington Beach Desalination Project would create 50 million gallons of drinking water per day, and construction is also underway in Carlsbad for a similar Poseidon desalination project. The Coastal Commission hearing on the Coastal Development Permit will be in October or November, Commission staff told Poseidon officials. The CDP is the last permit required for construction of the privately funded project.

"Poseidon appreciates Commission staff's extensive due diligence in processing our CDP application," said Poseidon Resources' Vice President Scott Maloni. "The process has been extremely thorough, with commission staff providing input on the project to Poseidon and other permitting agencies on no less than a dozen occasions, and Poseidon providing staff with many detailed submissions and with voluminous information based on a decade of environmental and technical studies conducted by industry experts and leading scientists."

Getting Commission staff to deem the application complete is a major milestone. In August 2006, Poseidon filed its application for a CDP with Commission staff. During the process, Poseidon provided the staff a thorough analysis of the project and its consistency with Coastal Act policies, based on more than a decade of environmental research and study. In 12 separate submittals, Poseidon covered issues related to the need for the project and its relationship to existing water conservation and water management plans, marine and coastal environments, land use, growth inducement, public access and health and welfare, power plant operations, project mitigation and alternatives, project economics, plant ownership and operation, product water purchase agreements, tsunami and sea level rise hazards and energy use and production.

The Coastal Commission approved a Coastal Development Permit for Poseidon's Carlsbad desalination project in 2007. Based on the Coastal Commission's handling of the Carlsbad project's permit, Poseidon has offered to include several mitigation plans as conditions to the Huntington Beach project's CDP. These mitigation measures include a Marine Life Mitigation Plan (MLMP), Energy Minimization & Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan (GHG Plan) and Seismic, Tsunami and Flood Design Mitigation and Emergency Response Plan (Hazard Plan).

With the future of imported water strained due to fragility of the Colorado River and Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay-Delta Delta -- both critical components in Southern California's current water supply -- desalination offers a drought-proof local supply to shore up the reliability of Orange County's local and regional water supplies.

"Seawater desalination will be a critical component of Orange County's future water supply, and the determination by the Coastal Commission staff that the permit application is complete is welcome news given the water supply situation in Southern California," said Brett Barbre, board member of the Municipal Water District of Orange County and Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. "Approval of the project by the Coastal Commission this year is necessary to ensure the timely integration of this important new water supply."

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