Arthur Saginian | Bigger Fish to Fry Than Desalination

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

Re: Gary Curtis, letters, Jan. 6, “Water: What a Waste!” 

Wasted rain water. Yes, Mr. Curtis, when I lived in Hollywood my parents would take me to one of the bridges that cross over the Los Angeles River (the one on Los Feliz Boulevard near Griffith Park), and we would watch in awe and horror at the raging river whenever we’d get a downpour. I used to have nightmares of falling into it. The sight of the sheer volume of churning water and debris was terrifying to me. And it all got dumped into the ocean by the harbors. 

We used to have abundant aquifers that were recharged by those downpours, but those days are gone. What didn’t get paved over by developers or channelized by flood control districts and the Army Corps of Engineers was polluted by the aerospace and other industries. But don’t blame our political leaders or their appointees. They’re owned by those who got them there. I place the blame on civilization itself — the way we urban humans live in general. And don’t look to desalination plants to save us from drought, or from ourselves. Are you aware of the cost of building, operating and maintaining a desalination plant, not to mention the infrastructure to tie it into potable water systems? Oh, and once all of our existing tanks and reservoirs are filled the plant would have nowhere to put the water. Now that would be a waste.

Desalination plants are very expensive luxuries, but to give you credit not nearly as bad as a useless bullet train. Their cost, even as a backup to existing supply, is not yet warranted because if it was they would be built. Yes, take a good look at our current state of affairs, locally and beyond. It may stun you to know that we have way bigger fish to fry.

Arthur Saginian

Santa Clarita

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