Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board Releases Revised Permit for Huntington Beach Desalination Project
Poseidon Proposes Enhanced Coastal Habitat Restoration Plan and Accelerated Bolsa Chica Wetlands Financial Obligation
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA (February 12, 2021) - The Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board (“Regional Board”) today released a revised Tentative Order permitting the operation of the proposed Huntington Beach Desalination Project (“Project”). The Regional Board is tentatively planning to consider adoption of the permit this coming April.
The Regional Board held three public hearings in July and August 2020 to consider the staff- recommended amendment and renewal of the Project’s permit, which was first adopted in 2006. The Regional Board requested at the time that Poseidon and its staff work together to amend plans to mitigate the Project’s unavoidable marine life effects.
On Tuesday, July 21, the Santa Ana Regional Water Board staff issued their recommendation that its Board APPROVE the renewal of the Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Plant permit, at their board hearing on July 30-31. Public testimony via Zoom will begin on Thursday, July 30. This flyer has more information about the hearing. If you would like to register to speak, please reach out to Brian Lochrie at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone or text at 949-294-8269.
A recent economic study was released by Bay-area M-Cubed that analyzed the fiscal and economic impact of Poseidon Water’s proposed seawater desalination plant in Huntington Beach. The total capital investment has been pegged at $1.4 billion including the product water distribution system to convey the high-quality drinking water throughout Orange County while creating new, local jobs and tax revenue for Orange County.
As part of the draft permit issued by the Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board, Poseidon Water will be required to assume responsibility for the preservation, enhancement, and restoration of the Bolsa Chica wetlands. Poseidon will assume responsibility for the maintenance of a functional ocean inlet, which serves as the lifeblood of the Ecological Reserve, and additionally restore muted tidelands and design and construct a water circulating system to keep Bolsa Chica flushed with fresh seawater, enabling a thriving and healthy habitat. This video provides more details about the Bolsa Chica preservation program.
Support in Huntington Beach for Poseidon Water’s proposed desalination plant is growing according to a May 2020 survey with more than three out of four Huntington Beach voters saying they support the Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Facility. On Tuesday, July 21, the Orange County Register ran a front-page story about the strong support desal has with the public. You can read that here.
“Desalination must be included in any discussion of future water sources for Orange County."