TX - Port Aransas Conservancy Wins Contested Case Hearing
On both environmental and economic grounds the Port Aransas Conservancy (PAC) has been contesting the industrialization of Harbor Island, within the city limits of Port Aransas.
After receiving hundreds of complaints about the Port of Corpus Christi Authority's (PCCA) plans for a desalination plant there, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) referred the matter to the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) for a contested case hearing before two administrative law judges (ALJ). The judges recommended to TCEQ that they deny PCCA's discharge permit application.
Among other favorable rulings, the ALJ concluded, "After considering the evidence and argument the Port Authority has not met its burden to prove that the proposed discharge will not adversely impact the marine environment, aquatic life, and wildlife, including spawning eggs and larval migration."
PAC President James King was understandably upbeat. "The contested case ruling today by two administrative law judges recommending the denial of the TCEQ Discharge Permit is a huge victory for the city of Port Aransas, our coastal ecosystem, and the folks who love this part of Texas. This victory was made possible by our excellent team of attorneys and by the overwhelming support of many donors, citizens, and our strong local science community. The Port Aransas Conservancy is pushing back on the Port of Corpus Christi on its plan to industrialize our backyard and PAC is fully engaged in opposing that folly."