Charges reveal why Monterey desalination project halted
22 Nov 11 by desalination
The full extent of the allegations of conflict of interest involving Stephen P Collins, the former director of the Monterey County Water Resources Agency (MCWRA) in his dealings with the Regional Desalination Project has now been revealed.
Collins appeared in court on 16 November 2011 charged with 33 felony counts and 6 misdemeanors on suspicion of profiting off water contracts he handed out while serving as the water board’s director. The case was adjourned until 30 November and Collins did not enter a plea.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) authorized plans on 2 December 2010 to develop the 10 MGD (37,850 m³/d) Regional Desalination Project, which would have been built on the California central coast north of Monterey. A central allegation is that Collins was paid US$ 160,000 by RMC Water & Environment for his work on the US$ 400 million desalination project throughout last year while he served on the county water board.
When the allegations came to light, MCWRA declared that the project’s water-purchase agreement signed on 6 April 2010, together with associated agreements, were void. This in turn led to partner California American Water (CalAm) invoking a disputes procedure and seeking other alternatives to the project, including three involving desalination projects.
Discussions between CalAm, MCWRA and other parties are ongoing. Cal Am has been ordered to find an alternative source to the Carmel River aquifer for about 10,000 acre-feet (12.3 million m³) of water per year.
Login on register to comment
A world leader committed to preserving resources through desalination and reuse
The Group designs
Leading expert delivers online masterclass on membrane fouling
There is only one week left to register for this exciting new format of online event and deepen your understanding of membrane fouling in only one hour.
Singapore International Water Week Turns 10 Years: Celebrating a Decade of Accomplishment in the Global Water Industry
The Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) is the world's premier platform to connect the water industry for innovative solutions and sustainable urban water management. The biennial event gathers stakeholders from the global water industry to share best practices
Related supplier content
Xylem reuse system to up potable water supply in Los Angeles
Water technology company
Sterlitech offers new ultrafiltration membranes
Laboratory products and membrane testing firm Sterlitech is offering Synder Filtration's recently developed ultrafiltration membranes
Osmoflo reports concentrate reduction success
Australian desalination company Osmoflo has reported success with site tests of its concentrate reduction technology for reverse osmosis (RO) plants. The firm said its Brine Squeezer system increased recovery from 80% to 95% in a mine wastewater recovery pilot.