Cal-Am's desal threatens to diminish and contaminate Marina's water supply with saltwater intrusion.
Cal-Am's desal proposed wells are mostly underground (not under the ocean) and would pump 17,000 acre-feet of brackish (salty) groundwater from under Marina. This is five times more water than Marina Coast Water District's own wells pump.
Pumping out the brackish water will allow seawater to flow into the Salinas Valley Groundwater Basin.
The seawater contamination could force MCWD to spend tens of millions to move three large wells further inland, potentially pumping more from the deep aquifer also used by Salinas, and stressing Salinas area water supplies as well.
Cal-Am has no water rights to take groundwater from the overdrafted basin that serves MCWD's 35,000 customers in Marina, the Ord Community, Seaside, East Garrison, and other communities. We believe Cal-Am will never obtain this right and are in litigation now to prove it.
Cal-Am claims they won't harm Marina Coast's wells, but they can't prove it. We can't live with that.