Squid Fry for Jul 26, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
SALTY SOLUTION… Believe it or not, Squid does have friends. And recently, more than a few of Squid’s aquatic allies have ended up intake-pipe kill, which is why Squid’s not too keen on seawater DESALINATION projects that use once-through cooling systems. These systems pull ocean water through pipes and kill Squid’s pals in the process – like poor Marty Mollusk. The bugger didn’t stand a chance.
Squid’s got the backing of the CALIFORNIA COASTAL COMMISSION too; a report states that beach wells – a pipeline beneath the ocean floor that uses sand to naturally filter out seaweed, fish and the like – should be used whenever feasible.
Considering the Coastal Commission’s preference, Squid wasn’t too surprised to read in the >>North County Times, which covers San Diego and Riverside counties, that the Coastal Commission recently charged POSEIDON RESOURCES with withholding information about its plans to build the nation’s biggest desal plant in Carlsbad.
As with the Moss Landing plant, the Commission has to approve the Carlsbad project. Poseidon has been trying for 10 months to get the Commission’s staff to label its application complete and move it forward for a vote in November. TOM LUSTER, the Commission’s desal expert, told the >>North County Times that the agency has repeatedly asked Poseidon to provide details about the project’s finances and environmental impacts, including “if the plant could use subsurface [beach] wells to get its water instead of pulling it directly from the ocean.” Poseidon has yet to comply.
Squid finds this troubling. Poseidon is one of the companies competing to build a desal plant for the Peninsula. The company has partnered with PAJARO/SUNNY MESA COMMUNITY SERVICES DISTRICT, and plans to use once-through cooling in its proposed Moss Landing project. The company’s got a shoddy track record: In Tampa Bay, Fla., Poseidon helped build a desal plant that ran into financing trouble, came online five months late and delivered less water than promised. Local officials say Poseidon hid information that would have made the plant better.
And furthermore: Cal Am’s competing proposal for a Moss Landing desal plant also proposes to use once-through cooling. Cal Am President Kent Turner doesn’t seem all that concerned that Squid’s got a better chance surviving a trip through a Moss Landing intake pipe than he’s got at obtaining the needed permits from the Coastal Commission.
This, of course, means that we’ll all get to start the Coastal Water Project process again, from scratch, a decade or so down the road, when Turner admits defeat. And if there’s one thing Squid hates more than losing Squid’s buddies to intake pipes, it’s wasting Squid’s money on Cal Am’s pipe dream.