December 21, 2011
Monterey Herald, Monterey, California

It's all about water profits

You often hear that desalinated water is the most expensive water in the world. Here on the Monterey Peninsula, a better candidate for that title is the water we get today from Cal Am. With an annual revenue of over $43million and a current annual distribution of about 12,000 acre-feet, the cost of Cal Am water here today is almost $3,600 per acre-foot.

Contrast that with the cap suggested by the Division of Ratepayer Advocates of the Public Utilities Commission for desalinated water from the proposed Marina Coast desalination plant of $2,200 per acre-foot or with the just-over $600 per acre-foot that desalinated water costs in Israel.

Contrast the $3,600 with the $1,800 per acre-foot that Nader Agha has said that the desalinated water produced by his proposed Moss Landing Desalination Plant would cost. That desalinated water would cost half of what we are currently paying for Carmel River water. No wonder Agha's project is anathema to Cal Am.

Ron Weitzman
Water Plus

Weitzman, who lives in Carmel, is president of WaterPlus.

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