In September 2002, AB 2717 was signed into law, designating the Department of Water Resources (DWR) to establish the California Desalination Task Force (Task Force) to “make recommendations related to potential opportunities for the use of seawater and brackish water desalination.” The Task Force, through DWR, was to report to the legislature on potential opportunities for the use of seawater and brackish water desalination in California, impediments to the use of desalination technology; and what role, if any, the State should play in furthering the use of desalination technology.
This Handbook builds on the report from the Task Force, which includes a list of key findings and major recommendations, submitted to the State Legislature in early 2004. (Chapter 9, #1 contains a link to the Task Force findings and recommendations.)
The Task Force was comprised of a broad array of stakeholders who worked to develop consensus on the many recommendations developed. While consensus was not achieved on all points, the findings and recommendations highlighted were broadly supported by Task Force members.
No claims of consensus are made for this Handbook. But every effort was made to build as closely as possible on the Task Force recommendations and to accurately describe both the opportunities and concerns associated with desalination. Furthermore, the Handbook is intended to outline a process to assist in: 1) determining the appropriate conditions, 2) addressing identified concerns, and 3) building public trust for desalination projects.