I found Mike Beanan’s May 21 opinion piece, “Are We a Gulf or An Ocean?” informative, thought-provoking, and hopeful. I, too, love our beautiful coastline and the marine life that delights and inspires me daily. Mike challenged us to turn our love for the ocean into caring for the ocean by aiming for a Zero Liquids Discharge to Laguna’s coastal waters. Rather than dumping millions of gallons of secondary sewage (via the Aliso Creek Ocean Outfall) into an ocean area that is frequented by many species of marine animals, why not treat the water, upcycle it, and use it in ways that can benefit our whole community? This could include wildfire prevention and suppression as well as irrigation for homes, businesses, and food gardens. There are cities and farms throughout California that are safely using recycled wastewater for such purposes.
My understanding is that a plan for upcycling and storing treated sewage water has been drawn and proposed here in Laguna Beach. However, there doesn’t seem to be enough political will behind implementing it at this time. There should be. We are in one of the worst droughts in our state’s history, and it’s predicted to get worst. Clean water is a sacred, life-sustaining resource. We can’t survive without it. Let’s expand our “water-wise” status here in Laguna and invest in clean, recycled and plentiful water for generations to come—while protecting our precious ocean.
Cheryl Procaccini, Laguna Beach