Since 1 April 2015, when California’s drought reached a political climax and the governor mandated a 25% cut in water usage for urban utilities, there has been an uptick of new supply-side projects in the state. Four desalination plants and associated infrastructure requiring as much as US$1.3 billion of investment have transitioned to the next phase of development. At the same time, Poseidon Water continues to develop its US$890 million Huntington Beach facility that has been hindered by permitting challenges.
These developments follow the State Water Resources Control Board’s (SWRB) approval of an amendment to the state’s Water Quality Control Plan for the Ocean Waters of California (Ocean Plan) on 6 May 2015. The amendment supports the use of ocean water as a reliable supplement to traditional water supplies and clarifying permitting processes for planned projects.
- California desal jumps forward
- Streamlined permitting process provides optimism for pending capacity
- Supply-side activity gains momentum