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Laguna Only City To NOT Fight New Stormwater Permit

First: The Clean Water Now! Coalition would like to thank the City of Laguna Beach for its conspicuous absence regarding the named litigants of the latest stormwater prescriptions by Cal/EPA

SDRWQCB Order No. R9-2009-0002 (NPDES No. CAS0108740), South Orange County Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4 Permit).

The same permittees names appear in the South OC civil complaint filed this month with Cal/EPA who fought compliance during the previous cycle in 2002 (County of Orange, OC Flood Control and ALL municipalities).

After viewing the February 2010 hearing agenda for the SDRWQCB, we were very pleased to see that once again we seem to be the only city, coastal or inland, that sees merit in progressing these federal Clean Water and state Porter-Cologne Water Quality Acts. Their intent is to reverse previous decades of surface water quality degradation, and are not as onerous, draconian or difficult to comply with as typified by chronic violators. Permittees pay lip service to clean water but refuse to fund or put off implementation (through litigation) as long as possible to achieve economic benefits via non-compliance.

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https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/sandiego/board_info/agendas/2010/feb/feb10.shtml

Second: Douglas Du Maurier has made several appearances at LBCC and his comments have appeared in local media regarding the rehab of the MCAS El Toro, specifically the remediation of the contaminated aquifer and detritus (briny waste) coming from the Irvine Ranch Water District (IRWD) base aquifer treatment plant.

Doug has been incorrectly informing both our City officials and media that 2 million gallons per day (2 mgd) of this waste are being diverted to the Aliso Creek Ocean Outfall Pipe (ACOOP).

The public should be informed that EVERY waste treatment facility, EVERY outfall pipe from such waste treatment plants carries a separate NPDES Permit. Any facility that treats and discharges into surface waters requires one.

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No offense to Doug, but I have been tracking this since it was approved as a amendment to the SOCWA Permit for the ACOOP back in June of 2006:

https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/sandiego/board_info/agendas/2006/aug/item14/suppdoc2.pdf

ORDER NO. R9-2006-0055 NPDES NO. CA0107611 allows for up to .66 mgd (660,000 gallons per day) of the briny waste from this Irvine Dealter Project (IDP). I was in Montana on a 4 month working vacation when this was passed, otherwise I would have personally appear and strongly objected.

All of that said, CWN!C and Friends of the Aliso Creek Steelhead have filed numerous objections to this additional toxic burden placed upon the ACOOP due to its impact to marine life and proximity to the beach. The ACOOP discharge is a little over 1 mile out and in only 125 feet of water.

Here’s a link to our formal complaint, embedded in our ongoing opposition to all diversions that have negative ecological impacts. CWN!C is not alone in its long standing policy of opposing diversions as bandaids.

Both Rick Wilson and Chad Nelsen of the Surfrider Foundation have openly voiced the same diversion objections to EPA, and in fact it is the formal position of Cal/EPA that diversions should constitute short term solutions:

https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/sandiego/board_info/agendas/2009/Jul/item8/comments_2/Clean_Water_Now2.pdf

We will be contesting this diversion from MCAS El Toro (IRWD) and the others for the ACOOP when it comes up for renewal in August of 2011 and we hope that Doug and other distressed parties add their written comments and make a personal appearance at the hearing to object.

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