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Santa Cruz Sentinel 9/23/11

Some desalination questions I'd ask

The Sentinel recently reported that two former Santa Cruz mayors arranged an "invitation-only crowd of about 50 dignitaries" to hear our water agency directors, Bill Kocher and Laura Brown, pitch the need for a seawater desalination plant. Brown stated, "We need to know what the community wants us to do." If that is true, why was the meeting closed to the public and why did questions from the audience have to be written then vetted? Here are some I'd ask: Are there any publicly owned seawater desal plants successfully operating in the U.S.? [No] Have any desal plants in the U.S. been built without major cost overruns and multiple operational technical failures? [No] Have multiple coastal communities determined that managing existing water supplies by investing in infrastructure, water reclamation and water transfer projects is a better solution than building costly and energy intensive desal plants? [Yes] Will the Westside community be drinking this desal water 365 days a year? [Yes]

Teetle Clawson, Santa Cruz

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