MOU Reached for the First 100% Renewable Energy Desalination Project in the Western Hemisphere
IRVINE, California – The Orange County Power Authority (OCPA) and Poseidon Water entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today to work together toward making the Huntington Beach Seawater Desalination Facility the first desalination plant in the western hemisphere to be powered entirely by renewable energy.
Poseidon’s proposed desalination project in Huntington Beach requires an average steady load of approximately 25 megawatts, which would make it one of the larger energy users in Orange County. The City of Huntington Beach, an OCPA member, recently voted to offer businesses and residents 100% renewable energy through OCPA. While the project is already guaranteed to have zero carbon footprint through the state’s carbon offset program, being powered completely by renewable energy would further enhance the facility’s environmental sustainability.
“We’re proud to enter into this MOU with Poseidon Water today and are pleased to see they are dedicated to ensuring the water produced by this state-of-the-art desalination plant will be powered by solar, wind and other renewable sources,” said OCPA Chairman Mike Carroll.
“My fellow Huntington Beach City Council Members and I recently selected 100% renewable energy, through OCPA, as our default plan for customers – taking bold steps to address climate change,” said OCPA Board Member and Huntington Beach Mayor Pro Tem Mike Posey. “With this project located in Huntington Beach, I am happy to see that Poseidon Water has also committed to work toward making their project even more sustainable by working with OCPA in an effort to power the desalination plant entirely with renewable energy.”
In addition to today’s MOU, the project has enhanced its environmental protection by retrofitting its intake pipes to use wedge-wire screens to minimize marine life impacts. Also, Poseidon Water has committed to protecting and preserving the Bolsa Chica wetlands for the next generation.
“We set a precedent in 2010 by making our proposed Huntington Beach desalination project 100% carbon neutral through our voluntary Energy Minimization & Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan,” said Poseidon Water Vice President Scott Maloni. “However, it has always been our goal to have the project powered entirely by renewable energy if it were feasible to do so and with today’s MOU in partnership with the OCPA, we’ve shown our commitment to making that a reality.”
The MOU guarantees that OCPA and Poseidon Water will meet at least monthly to work toward a binding agreement to ensure the project can be powered entirely by renewable energy sources.
About Orange County Power Authority
As Orange County’s Community Choice Aggregation Program, OCPA is a not-for-profit public agency that offers cleaner power at stable rates, significantly reducing energy-related greenhouse emissions and enabling reinvestment in local energy programs through consumer choice. At full launch, OCPA will be a load serving entity supporting approximately 875 MW peak load and will provide electricity service and innovative sustainability programs to more than 820,000 residents and businesses in five member communities across Orange County, California. For more information about OCPA, visit www.ocpower.org.