- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
"Worldwide growth in the use of desalination to produce a reliable supply of drinking water rose sharply over the past year," the association said, noting that the rise is believed to be an indication of a trend. The results were from a study that helped make up the association's 2008-09 edition of the association's Desalination Yearbook, published by Global Water Intelligence. Among figures quoted in the publication, the amount of global planned capacity grew by 43 percent in 2007, to 6.8 million cu. meters per day. The growth trend has continued in 2008 at a clip of 39 percent the association said.
Much of that growth was in the Middle East. However, the association said that new technologies demonstrated in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia will overcome barriers to desalination in the U.S. for coastal areas in the American Southwest and Southeast, where high population gains have squeezed limited water supplies.
Already, a major project is underway in San Diego, and major water providers are looking at possible systems in Georgia and Florida. At Weftec.08 in Chicago this week, water experts spoke on the potential for modern desalination techniques, which use membranes rather than boiling to separate the salt, to make the ocean a major source of the world's potable water.