Two Rincon Projects Receive 2021 AEP Conference Merit Awards



The California Association of Environmental Professionals (AEP) recently announced the 2021 winners of its Annual Awards Program. AEP recognizes winning projects as those that represent the best work products in the environmental profession.  We are proud to see two of our projects recognized in their selections:

Pismo Beach California Coastline from Above

Final Environmental Impact Report for the Central Coast Blue Project

AEP Merit Award: Environmental Analysis Document

Key Rincon Staff: Jennifer Haddow, Annaliese Miller, Amanda Antonelli, Katherine Green, Carolyn Honeycutt, Doug Drynan, Mike Tom, Colby Boggs, Dustin Merrick, Hannah Haas, Mary Pfeiffer, and Erik Holtz


Rincon partnered with the Cities of Pismo Beach (lead agency), Grover Beach, and Arroyo Grande, and the South San Luis Obispo County Sanitation District (SSLOCSD) with support from the Oceano Community Services District, to prepare the Central Coast Blue (“proposed project” or “project”) – a regional advanced purified water project intended to enhance supply reliability by reducing the Santa Maria Groundwater Basin’s (SMGB) vulnerability to drought and seawater intrusion. The project would primarily involve the injection of advanced purified water into the SMGB via a series of seven injection wells to develop a seawater intrusion barrier. By recharging the local groundwater basin, the project would provide local communities with a constant source of water supply that is independent of climate or environmental factors. In addition, the development of a seawater intrusion barrier would improve local water supply reliability and resiliency by protecting the existing groundwater supply for continued use by local agencies to provide potable water to tens of thousands of residents, including the disadvantaged communities of Grover Beach and Oceano. Furthermore, the proposed project would beneficially reuse approximately 70 to 90 percent of the locally-produced secondary treated effluent from the two WWTPs, which would greatly reduce the amount of effluent discharged to the Pacific Ocean.

City of San Luis Obispo CEQA GHG Emissions Significance Thresholds and Guidance

AEP Merit Award: Environmental Resource Document

Key Rincon Staff: Erik Feldman, Kelsey Bennett, Annaliese Miller


San Luis Obispo viewed from the Cerro Peak

Rincon partnered with the City of San Luis Obispo to peer review the City’s draft GHG emission reduction measures for appropriateness and legal defensibility and prepare the City of San Luis Obispo CEQA GHG Emissions Significance Thresholds and Guidance document. The City of San Luis Obispo aims to become a carbon-neutral community and desires to contribute its fair share of State greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions, including through its approval of discretionary actions (i.e., plans and projects) that are subject to review under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The document was developed to provide guidance to both the City and applicants for preparation of appropriate CEQA GHG emissions analyses, including direction on how to tier from the City’s Climate Action Plan under CEQA Guidelines Section 15183.5 using the City CEQA GHG Emissions Analysis Compliance Checklist (Checklist) or quantitative thresholds of significance for projects that do not qualify for use of the Checklist.

 We congratulate all who contributed to these award-winning projects!