Sustainable Seaside endorses the Public Water Now petition to place an initiative on the ballot calling for the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District to buy back our water system from Cal Am. Cal Am has a history of poor environmental stewardship that includes overdraft of the Carmel River, mismanagement of the San Clemente Dam, overdraft of the Seaside Groundwater Basin and misrepresentation about the source water for its proposed desal plant.
Good stewardship need not be at odds with economical stewardship, yet the profit motive of a corporate-owned water utility encourages low-cost operations regardless of ecological consequences. Sustainable water stewardship is best guided by decision-making that effectively integrates economic, social and environmental considerations. It is most effective when it involves a broad and diverse set of stakeholders that understands the local context of needs, risks, and governance.
We believe that a transition to locally-controlled public ownership will benefit local water customers by providing greater transparency, responsiveness, and accountability. Removing the profit motive will build resilience, an indicator of sustainable communities, through local reinvestment of money that would otherwise be diverted to shareholders. Water is a finite resource and is fundamental to human well-being. It is only renewable if managed carefully. Please sign the Public Water Now petition by March 31st.
Sustainable Seaside Chair