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Poseidon Desal Plant Gets Fresh Analysis, but Coronavirus Delays Friday Meeting

Two issues that could decide the fate of the proposed Poseidon desalination plant in Huntington Beach will have to wait for public debate, as the meeting of the Regional Water Quality Control Board planned for Friday, March 13, has been cancelled because of the coronavirus.

A water board staff report prepared for the meeting provides apparent justification for the board to approve the project, but it also notes the board may disagree and request a revision. Poseidon Water needs just two more permits to go forward — one from the water board and then one from the Coastal Commission.

The workshop planned for Friday was to follow up a similar session held in December. At that meeting, several key issues continued to concern some board members, who requested additional information on whether the desalinated water was needed and whether the proposed mitigation was adequate for the environmental damage expected.

‘Miners’ Pull Lead Bullets From the Santa Ana River. Do They Help the Environment, or Hurt it?

Shrapnel from ricocheting bullets hits Kenny Graham about four times a day. At this point, he just accepts it as part of his job.

As he rolled a cigarette and talked, a piece of flying metal banged viciously off a mechanical contraption with holes in it used to separate sand and rocks, not two feet from Graham’s unprotected hands. “There goes a pellet right there,” he said deadpan, seated in the dry, sandy Santa Ana River in Redlands. “Ask and you shall receive.”

Researchers Look to Improve Leak Detection for the World’s Aging Water Pipes

Across the United States, underground labyrinths of leaky pipes lose more than a trillion gallons of water a year — and the problem is mirrored around the world.

“It’s a huge problem, especially in the cities,” said Daniel Tartakovsky, a professor of energy resources engineering at Stanford University in California. Tartakovsky and his former student Abdulrahman Alawadhi from the University of California, San Diego have proposed a way to improve a traditional method of detecting these leaks.

‘Miracle March’? Feet of Sierra Snow Beginning This Weekend is Just What California Needs

Much-needed snow will blanket California’s Sierra Nevada high country this weekend into next week, bringing hope of a “Miracle March” that could replenish vital, water-providing snowpack after a record-dry February.

A major change in the weather pattern is ahead for Northern California as unsettled and colder conditions will emerge. This change will be accompanied by low pressure that will track southward near the West Coast this weekend and will remain near California early next week before this system pushes eastward into the Great Basin.

IID Board Honors National Ag Day

The Imperial Irrigation District Board of Directors tipped their proverbial hat to the region’s farmers Tuesday by saluting National Ag Day during their regular board meeting.

Local farmers and growers providing food products for the United States and the world have celebrated for the past 47 years.

National Ag Day is March 24.

FPUD Awards Zak Controls Contract for Conjunctive Use Project SCADA Services

Zak Controls has been awarded the Fallbrook Public Utility District contract for the supervisory control and data acquisition system programming for FPUD’s Santa Margarita River Conjunctive Use Project.

The Feb. 24 FPUD board meeting included a 5-0 vote to award the Phoenix-based company a contract for $301,738.

“It’s just for all the programming for all the controls and all the automation for the project. It’s basically to help make it so we don’t have to have people there all the time,” general manager Jack Bebee said.