Keith Solar represents public and private clients primarily in connection with water rights and water-related issues, with particular emphasis in desalination and potable reuse.
With respect to water rights and water-related issues, Keith has significant experience with the negotiation and documentation of: purchase, sale and lease of adjudicated groundwater rights; purchase, sale and lease of groundwater; purchase and sale of real property for the purpose of acquiring associated water rights; acquisition, disposition and lease of privately owned or municipal water systems; public/private partnerships for the sale, lease, operation and management of municipal water systems; acquisition, disposition and lease of shares in mutual water companies; agreements for the manufacture and sale of membranes and spiral wound elements for use in desalination facilities; agreements regarding desalination facilities, including without limitation agreements regarding the purchase of desalinated seawater, development agreements regarding conveyance facilities for desalinated seawater and water delivery agreements; water transfer and exchange agreements; agreements for the treatment of contaminated groundwater; and design-build-operate agreements.
Keith served as special counsel to the City of Carlsbad since 2002 to assist the city and the Carlsbad Municipal Water District in negotiating land use and water purchase agreements, respectively, for the Claude “Bud” Lewis Carlsbad Seawater Desalination Plant. As built, that plant produces up to 54 million gallons per day of desalinated seawater and is the largest desalination plant in the Western Hemisphere. Keith currently represents IDE Americas, Inc., the designer and operator of the desalination plant, in all matters relating to plant operation.
While serving as deputy city attorney for the City of Indio, Keith formed the Indio Water Authority, a joint powers agency whose members are the City of Indio and the Indio Redevelopment Agency. The Authority was formed to lease and operate the city’s municipal water system.
On behalf of private water clients, Keith has particular experience in desalination and in analyzing the nature and priority of riparian, overlying, appropriative or prescriptive water rights that such clients are applying or attempting to apply to reasonable and beneficial use.
With respect to water or water-related issues, Keith has represented: the City of Carlsbad; the Carlsbad Municipal Water District; the City of Indio; the County of San Diego; the Indio Water Authority; the San Diego County Water Authority; Basin Water, Inc.; Empire Water Corporation; Fluid Systems; Global H20; IDE Americas, Inc.; James C. Roberts, Inc.; Kaiser.
From 2002-2004, he served as a member of the Legal Affairs Committee of the Association of California Water Agencies.
From 2000-2006, Keith was general counsel to Basin Water, Inc., which became publicly traded on NASDAQ following its initial public offering in May, 2006. From 2000-2009, Keith served as a member of the Board of Directors of Basin Water, Inc. From 2006-2009, he served as chair of Basin Water Inc.’s Compensation Committee, and from 2007-2009, he served as chair of Basin Water Inc.’s Nominating and Governance Committee. Prior to the sale of all of its assets to Envirogen Technologies, Inc., Basin Water, Inc. was a leading provider of proven, cost-effective turnkey solutions for treating contaminated groundwater to drinking water standards.
From 2014-2016, Keith served as a member of the State of California, Direct Potable Reuse Advisory Board. From 2014-2015, he also represented San Diego Council District 1 as a member of the City of San Diego Pure Water Working Group. From 2012-2013, Keith served as a member of the City of San Diego Water Policy Implementation Task Force. He has authored several published commentaries on water issues, generally, and is an occasional lecturer at water conferences and CLE programs.
Keith was selected as a San Diego County Top Attorney 2008 and was featured in a special edition of The Daily Transcript, titled “Top Attorneys 2008.” Also in 2008, Keith was nominated as a “Top Influential” by readers of San Diego’s The Daily Transcript. In March of 2013, San Diego Magazine named Keith a “Top Lawyer in San Diego.” In 2014 and 2015, Keith was named “Water Law – Attorney of the Year in California” by Corporate INTL Magazine. In 2017 and 2018, he was named a ‘Super Lawyer.”