For Immediate Release
Tuesday, April 26, 2022
Lucila Garcia, 323-646-2150 (English, Español)
Betsy López-Wagner, 708-717-9408
Stop Poseidon Coalition Lauds California Coastal Commission Staff Report Recommendation to Deny the Proposed Brookfield-Poseidon Huntington Beach Desalination Plant
The coalition urges official project rejection by Commissioners at the May 12th hearing
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA (April 26, 2022) – The California-based ‘Stop Poseidon’ coalition comprised of environmental justice, coastal and ocean conservation groups, lauds the California Coastal Commission staff report recommendation to deny the proposed Brookfield-Poseidon Desalination Plant. The 204-page staff report released Monday included declarations in areas such as motions and resolutions, findings and declarations and the California Environmental Quality Act.
The following are statements by the Stop Poseidon coalition and its affiliates following the Commission’s staff report.
“First and foremost, I want to thank the spirits and people of the land for this beautiful day. Thank you to all here in the physical world who gave time from their life and much effort to make today possible. It is a beginning where the voices of the original people of the land and communities of color finally have their voices and concerns heard,” said Society of Native Nations Executive Director Frankie Orona.
“The California Coastal Commission’s staff report, released today, validates our decades of research into this plant and how it would strike a blow to our environment, cause further economic injustice, and hurt communities already facing environmental inequities. We have better, smarter alternatives to this plant and urge the Coastal Commission to vote against the project on May 12th,” said Susan Jordan, executive director of the California Coastal Protection Network. “We should never sacrifice our coast to drive profits for this foreign $650 billion corporation or any corporate polluter. It’s time for Brookfield-Poseidon to recognize the deep and irrevocable flaws with this project, cut its losses and publicly recognize this project and this site are not good for Huntington Beach or California – it’s time to shut it down for good.”
“Brookfield-Poseidon represents everything that must be opposed if we want a sustainable future for the coming generations: unnecessarily high energy use, overexploitation of natural resources, and disregard for environmental conservation,” said Alejandro Sobrera Barboza, coordinator for the Sunrise Movement in Orange County.
“The California Coastal Commission staff must be commended on the depth and breadth of their report, especially regarding the commitment to the Commission’s environmental justice policy and in spotlighting the potential implications for communities of concern ranging from profound and irreversible impacts on low-income ratepayers and other environmental justice communities.,” said Andrea León-Grossmann, Director of Climate Action, Azul. “The staff report shows, unequivocally, that the only appropriate decision for Brookfield’s proposed Poseidon plant is a denial. We urge the Commission to heed the staff’s sound and extensive logic in coming to its conclusion to reject Brookfield’s attempt to privatize California’s water.”
In response to the Newsom Administration weighing in on the project as well as Brookfield-Poseidon, Stop Poseidon coalition members issued the following:
“The Coastal Commission report is not the death knell for desalination in California, desalination was already losing momentum in lieu of water conservation and drinkable water recycling,” said California Coastkeeper Alliance’s Executive Director Sean Bothwell.
“Wrong desal; wrong site; wrong owner – approving this plant would be building in harm’s way and goes against California’s leadership in adapting for rising seas,” said Mandy Sackett, California Policy Coordinator for the Surfrider Foundation.
“We encourage the governor to follow the facts and not fall victim to a $650 billion dollar asset management firm – one who seeks to maximize profits and who will sell the Huntington Beach facility just like it did in Carlsbad avoiding responsibilities to mitigation,” said Garry Brown, Founder and President, Orange County Coastkeeper.
A few days earlier, the Stop Poseidon coalition submitted the Briefing Book: Opposition to the Proposed Brookfield-Poseidon Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Plant, to the California Coastal Commission. The Briefing Book made the most complete and compelling case as to why the wasteful and damaging project should be rejected. It was complied with multiple Fact Sheets grouped by subject area with coordinating active links.
The coalition is made up of Azul, the California Coastkeeper Alliance, California Coastal Protection Network, Orange County Coastkeeper and the Surfrider Foundation.
ABOUT STOP POSEIDON COALITION
Azul is a grassroots organization working with Latinxs to conserve coasts and oceans. It was founded in 2011 to bring Latinx perspectives and participation to ocean conservation and has long advocated for environmental justice and equity in the state of California, across the nation and at international levels.
California Coastkeeper Alliance represents watershed-focused California Waterkeepers as they fight for drinkable, swimmable, fishable waters for all Californians. It defends and expands California’s protective legislation and strengthens the function of our State Water Board.
California Coastal Protection Network (CCPN) works to uphold the core tenets of the California Coastal Act actively and effectively through policy, advocacy, and collaboration. We accomplish our mission by providing strong leadership to advance California’s 40-year legacy of coastal protection.
Orange County Coastkeeper was founded in 1999 with the mission to protect and promote sustainable water resources that are swimmable, drinkable, and fishable for present and future generations. Orange County Coastkeeper is a member of the International Waterkeeper Alliance, which has 236 different independent programs across 29 countries.
The Surfrider Foundation is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches, for all people, through a powerful activist network.