The Water Shortage Dilemma

Quoting Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”, John Patrick Ford explores the problem of water shortage in San Diego in his article entitled, “Water, Water Everywhere.” While the source material is an epic poem filled with allegory and imagery, the article explores the interesting paradox of water availability.

The Pacific Ocean certainly does not suffer from a dearth of water. San Diego is home to beautiful beaches and it’s shores are met with a constant flow of water. Yet, this water is filled with salt and is not fit for drinking. San Diego gets the majority of its drinking water from the San Francisco Bay Delta. As other areas, such as Long Beach, search for ways to be more self reliant for water supply, San Diego’s most logical, yet most expensive solution is a desalination plant.

If San Diego can harvest the ample water from the Pacific Ocean and turn it into drinking water, why not do it? Poseidon Resources is already constructing a Carlsbad based desalination plant. While it will be expensive, new developments in technology make it possible to cut costs in half by switching to desalination, rather than importing from the other side of the state.

The other viable option has been soured by its nickname, “toilet to tap.” The idea of purifying  grey water and making it into potable, or drinkable, water is actually a good idea, but people refuse to get behind it until they lose the stigma that it was once toilet water.

Whatever the choice, something needs to be done soon to combat the current drought in San Diego. What do you think should be done?

Read the article here.


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