La Quinta Desal Plants
Because of their potential to destroy aquatic life in La Quinta Channel, IOBCWA is challenging the three desalination plants that have been approved by the Texas Water Development Board as "recommended water strategies". Scientists state that both intake and discharge of these plants should only occur offshore in the Gulf, at locations specified in this report. Although these plants will generate potable water, they are all intended for industrial use and have the following sponsors:
CURRENT ACTION (due 3/29/21): Comments on POCCA Desal Intake Permit WRPERM 13630
Go To https://www14.tceq.texas.gov/epic/eComment/ and enter permit "WRPERM 13630":
Step 1 - Describe your relationship to the issue:
Step 1 - Describe your relationship to the issue:
- Name, address, and phone number
- How far you live and/or work from La Quinta Channel or specific desal plant location (Google Map coordinates: "27.87374, -97.29499")
- If you are a member of the Ingleside on the Bay Coastal Watch Association
- I STRONGLY OPPOSE the Port of Corpus Christi's placing an intake pipe for a desalination plant in La Quinta Channel
- I request a two-week extension of the deadline for comments on account of the recent freeze and loss of electricity in Texas.
- I request that a public meeting be held for the community to express its concerns.
- I request that a Contested Case Hearing be held
- According to the permit, the Port of Corpus Christi would be allowed to suck 62,890 gallons of water from La Quinta Channel every minute. Sucking in that amount of water that fast will require an enormous amount of suction power and I am concerned about aquatic life being trapped or killed in the process. This intake pipe is a death sentence!
- I and my family members (describe their relationship, such as grandchildren) love to fish/boat/swim/etc. along the Portland Shoreline where the intake pipe for the Port of Corpus Christi’s desalination facility will be located or in Ingleside Cove where the discharge will flow to. I am concerned that given the number of small larvae which will be sucked up, turned to sludge, and deposited into landfills, fishing will be badly impaired in the region.
- I am concerned about the amount of salty brine that will be discharged from the desal plant, plus its mixing in with other waste water from the industries in La Quinta Channel. This can't be good for the fish - or for people! If the fish die, then the birds we love to watch will also die or leave the area.
- I am concerned about possible health effects on me or my family from the chemicals used in the desalination process, including pre-treatment.
- I fish for business and I am concerned about loss of income that will happen when aquatic life in La Quinta Channel and Corpus Christi Bay is harmed/destroyed by this desal plant.
- Many of us suffered through the historic winter storm in February 2021 and were without power for several days in freezing temperatures due to the amount of demand placed on the electrical grid in Texas. The operating pumps required to suck 62,890 gallons of water per minute will take an enormous amount of power, placing even more strain on the grid. I am opposed to issuing a permit which would demand excessive amounts of energy to supply water only for industrial use.
- Most of the desalinated water will be used by industry for cooling purposes. Aren't there federal regulations that apply to industrial cooling water intake structures?
- Since Corpus Christi Bay connects to the Gulf of Mexico, doesn't diverting water from Corpus Christi Bay to support private industry without federal oversight amount to stealing from the Waters of the United States (WOTUS)?
- Since Texas is already drought-prone and gets very hot, why is the Port of Corpus Christi enticing such thirsty high-energy-requiring industries to come here in the first place? Shouldn't they go where it's cooler and where there's more water?
- Since this desal plant has been listed as a "recommended water strategy" on the Region N Water Plan for 2021, I expect that the Port of Corpus Christi will try to get a low-interest loan from the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) to construct the plant. Isn't it a violation of Texas law to use public funds to support private industry? Who will have to pay back such a loan?
- All of our area scientists, including from Texas Parks & Wildlife, the General Land Office, the UT Marine Science Institute, and the Harte Research Institute, have said, in published reports, that seawater desalination intake and discharge should only occur in designated areas offshore in the Gulf. There's even an expedited permitting process for this. Why is the Port of Corpus Christi, a public entity, insisting on putting intake and discharge inside Corpus Christi Bay in the first place. Aren't they listening? Why aren't they showing the way by pursuing the expedited permit process that will keep our Bay safer?
- Why is the Port applying for this permit? Shouldn't it be the private industries that plan to use the desalinated water?
- Why aren't industries paying to construct this plant?
- Why aren't industries paying for pipelines to bring in water from offshore and pump the brine back offshore? After all, they pay for other pipelines that cross San Patricio County, tearing up communities and farm land.
- Anything else that concerns you about this permit in your own words, since that's most effective.
- Public Notice - posted 2/5/21, comments due 3/29/21
- Draft Permit - issued 5/11/20 (3 pages)
- Application - submitted 8/29/19 (57 pages)
- Administratively Complete Packet - approved 5/11/20 (142 pages)
- Submit Comments Online for Permit "WRPERM 13630"
- Review Submitted Comments for TCEQ ID# "WRPERM 13630" (include all Correspondence)