Poseidon Water’s controversial proposal for a Huntington Beach desalination plant might cost water customers more than previously thought, a factor that could create a new obstacle to construction of the $1.4 billion project.

Word that the principal customer for the water, the Orange County Water District, was reexamining costs came from district General Manager Mike Markus on Thursday, March 31, at an OC Forum panel discussion on solutions to water shortages.

It’s one of several recent signs of emerging challenges for Poseidon, which needs a permit from the state Coastal Commission before it can negotiate a final contract with the water district and build a plant to turn ocean water into tap water.