Borden: Fact and Fiction about Poseidon

Huntington Beach resident and newspaper columnist Bill Borden notes the many myths often perpetrated by opponents to the HB desalination project.


The most persistently controversial issue facing Huntington Beach is probably the proposed Poseidon desalination plant. Reading local papers and monitoring the Poseidon-bashing blogsters, one would think that the Huntington Beach project is the only one at issue. Not so. There are three Southern California projects planned: Huntington Beach, Dana Point and El Segundo.

 The project’s detractors have a very strident and factually selective mantra when it comes to the Poseidon. One element is that the Huntington Beach City Council, voting six to one in favor, is out of step with the rest of Orange County. The truth is that Anaheim, Fountain Valley, Santa Ana, Orange, Newport Beach and 20 other O.C. cities have passed support resolutions or have joined the HB Desalination Working Group.

 The militant greens will also tell us that natural resources, like ocean water, should not be marketed by private companies. In fact, water, coal, oil, natural gas, gold, silver, air, soil and all of their chemical components are already successfully and responsibly marketed by private companies all over the world. How anyone claiming to be an environmentalist can be against desalination is beyond comprehension.

 Accordingly, some claim to be in favor of desalination but opposed to Poseidon and its plans. Poseidon, like most other innovative companies, experienced a few bumps early on in their history. So did Edsel Ford, but it didn’t stop his company from making cars. Poseidon is the only corporation coming forward with a reasonable plan to desalinate sea water, contribute millions to Huntington Beach’s tax revenues, and provide hundreds of good solid jobs at a time when we desperately need them.

 Those who oppose Poseidon do not seem to have any alternative plan to solve the still looming problem of too many people and not enough water. We use our abundant supply of oil to make cars and trucks go, we heat our homes with natural gas, and we still generate electricity using coal. Why would we be opposed to the processing of ocean water by experts to provide life-giving fresh and healthful water for generations to come?

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