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Israel solves water woes with desalination
omaha.com ^ | Friday, May 30, 2014 12:33 am | Updated: 11:46 pm, Fri May 30, 2014.

Posted on 05/31/2014 9:25:52 AM PDT by ckilmer

Israel solves water woes with desalination

 

Posted: Friday, May 30, 2014 12:33 am | Updated: 11:46 pm, Fri May 30, 2014.

Associated Press |

SOREK, Israel (AP) — After experiencing its driest winter on record, Israel is responding as never before — by doing nothing.

While previous droughts have been accompanied by impassioned public service advertisements to conserve, this time around it has been greeted with a shrug — thanks in large part to an aggressive desalination program that has transformed this perennially parched land into perhaps the most well-hydrated country in the region.

"We have all the water we need, even in the year which was the worst year ever regarding precipitation," said Avraham Tenne, head of the desalination division of Israel's Water Authority. "This is a huge revolution."

By solving its water woes, Israel has created the possibility of transforming the region in ways that were unthinkable just a few years ago. But reliance on this technology also carries some risks, including the danger of leaving a key element of the country's infrastructure vulnerable to attack.

Situated in the heart of the Middle East, Israel is in one of the driest regions on earth, traditionally relying on a short, rainy season each winter to replenish its limited supplies. But rainfall only covers about half of Israel's water needs, and this past winter, that amount was far less.

According to the Israeli Meteorological Service, northern Israel, which usually gets the heaviest rainfalls, received just 50 to 60 percent of the annual average.

Tenne said the country has managed to close its water gap through a mixture of conservation efforts, advances that allow nearly 90 percent of wastewater to be recycled for agricultural use and, in recent years, the construction of desalination plants.

Since 2005, Israel has opened four desalination plants, with a fifth set to go online later this year. Roughly 35 percent of Israel's drinking-quality water now comes from desalination. That number is expected to exceed 40 percent by next year and hit 70 percent in 2050.

The Sorek desalination plant, located roughly 15 kilometers (10 miles) south of Tel Aviv, provides a glimpse of that future.

With a loud humming sound, the massive complex produces roughly 20 percent of Israel's municipal water, sucking in seawater from the nearby Mediterranean through a pair of 2.5-meter-wide pipes, filtering it through advanced "membranes" that remove the salt, and churning out clean drinking water. A salty discharge, or brine, gets pumped back into the sea, where it is quickly absorbed. The facility, stretching nearly six football fields in length, opened late last year.

Avshalom Felber, chief executive of IDE Technologies, the plant's operator, said Sorek is the "largest and most advanced" of its kind in the world, producing 624,000 cubic meters of potable water each day. He said the production cost is among the world's lowest, meaning it could provide a typical family's water needs for about $300 to $500 a year.

"Basically this desalination, as a drought-proof solution, has proven itself for Israel," he said. "Israel has become ... water independent, let's say, since it launched this program of desalination plants."

By meeting its water needs, Israel can focus on longer-term agricultural, industrial and urban planning, he added.

Disputes over water have in the past sparked war, and finding a formula for dividing shared water resources has been one of the "core" issues in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

Jack Gilron, a desalination expert at Ben-Gurion University, said Israel should now use its expertise to solve regional water problems. "In the end, by everybody having enough water, we take away one unnecessary reason that there should be conflict," he said.

Israel has already taken some small steps in that direction. Last year, it signed an agreement to construct a shared desalination plant in Jordan and sell additional water to the Palestinians.

Israel's advances with desalination could help it provide additional water to the parched West Bank, either through transfers of treated water or by revising existing arrangements to give the Palestinians a larger share of shared natural sources.

"Desalination, combined with Israel's leadership in wastewater reuse, presents political opportunities that were not available even five years ago," said Gidon Bromberg, the Israel director of Friends of the Earth Middle East, an environmental advocacy group.

Under interim peace accords signed two decades ago, Israel controls 80 percent of shared resources, while Palestinians get just 20 percent. A more equitable deal could remove a key source of tension, opening the way for addressing other issues, he said.

But with the most recent round of peace talks having collapsed last month, there is little hope of making progress on any of the core issues anytime soon.

Moreover, Bromberg said desalination is not an end-all solution. The plants require immense amounts of energy, consuming roughly 10 percent of Israel's total electricity production, he said.

The exact impact of desalination plants on the wider Mediterranean also isn't clear, he added. A number of countries, including Cyprus, Lebanon and Egypt, are either using or considering the use of desalination plants.

IDE's Felber said the impact of returning brine to the sea is "minor." But Bromberg insists it is too early to say what impact multiple plants would have, saying "much more research is required."

Relying so heavily on desalination also creates a potential security risk. Missile strikes or other threats could potentially knock out large portions of the country's water supply.

The threat is even more acute in Arab countries of the Gulf, which rely on desalination for more than 90 percent of their water supplies and are located much closer to rival Iran.

The Sorek plant is heavily protected with fences, security cameras and guards, and it is not connected to the Internet, instead using a private server, to prevent cyber attacks. But like other key infrastructure, it could be susceptible to missile strikes. During a 2006 war, for instance, Lebanese Hezbollah militants attempted to strike an Israeli power plant.

Tenne, of the Water Authority, acknowledged that "anything in Israel is vulnerable," but said the same could be said for sensitive infrastructure behind enemy lines. "I hope that people will be smart enough not to harm infrastructure," he said.



TOPICS: Business/Economy; Israel; US: California
KEYWORDS: california; desalination; israel; water
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1 posted on 05/31/2014 9:25:52 AM PDT by ckilmer
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To: ckilmer

Israel is no longer subject to “water pressure” from her neighbors! Watch the desert blossom now!


2 posted on 05/31/2014 9:32:30 AM PDT by Genoa (Starve the beast.)
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To: ckilmer

I wonder if Californians wouldn’t benefit from reading FR articles like this.


3 posted on 05/31/2014 9:33:41 AM PDT by BipolarBob
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To: ckilmer

and how are the pails spending our money? missiles


4 posted on 05/31/2014 9:34:02 AM PDT by morphing libertarian ( On to impeachment and removal (IRS, Benghazi)!!!)
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To: morphing libertarian

palis I love auto text


5 posted on 05/31/2014 9:34:31 AM PDT by morphing libertarian ( On to impeachment and removal (IRS, Benghazi)!!!)
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To: ckilmer

As if things weren’t bad enough, now the Zionists have occupied the Palestinian’s desalinization plants.


6 posted on 05/31/2014 9:34:38 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Conservatism is the political disposition of grown-ups.)
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To: Jeff Chandler

desalination


7 posted on 05/31/2014 9:35:29 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Conservatism is the political disposition of grown-ups.)
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To: BipolarBob
In other news . . .
8 posted on 05/31/2014 9:36:11 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Conservatism is the political disposition of grown-ups.)
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To: Genoa
Israel is no longer subject to “water pressure” from her neighbors! Watch the desert blossom now!

How nice! While in America under obama's destructive policies we are subject to "illegal immigration pressure" and have been watching our deserts blossom with invaders.

9 posted on 05/31/2014 9:39:03 AM PDT by Mastador1 (I'll take a bad dog over a good politician any day!)
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To: ckilmer
And some Really Good News . . .
10 posted on 05/31/2014 9:39:51 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Conservatism is the political disposition of grown-ups.)
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To: BipolarBob

If the people running California had half a brain they would be building these instead of that silly high speed rail system.


11 posted on 05/31/2014 9:41:01 AM PDT by TexasFreeper2009 (Obama lied .. the economy died.)
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To: BipolarBob
Absolutely.  I believe this is Southern California's future.  The sooner the better.

I also believe there is need for this nationwide.  Fresh water is in high demand nationwide.  As the population grows, alternative sources such as this will help releave presures in our interior, as coastal demands are met with desalinization.

California can be used as a good example.  The California Water Aquaduct brings water down from Northern California to Southern California.  The transfers of water leave Northern California lakes below their normal levels.  If Southern California would man up and develop the full potential of desalinization, Northern California would be a lot better positioned as well.  Pressures on the Colorado River would also be abated.


Ramirez's latest political cartoon LARGE VERSION
05/30/2014: LINK  LINK to regular sized version of Ramirez's latest, and an archive of his political cartoons.

In this political cartoon, Ramirez presents, "Obama: Foreign Policy"



FOLKS, THOSE OF YOU WHO CAN, PLEASE CLICK HERE AND PENCIL IN YOUR DONATION TO HELP END THIS FREEPATHONTHANK YOU!  We're over 92% now. Cool!
...this is a general all purpose message, and should not be seen as targeting any individual I am responding to...

12 posted on 05/31/2014 9:44:17 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: TexasFreeper2009

Not many Californians want the high speed rail. It’s a boondoggle of major proportions.


13 posted on 05/31/2014 9:45:02 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: ckilmer

Water is always a problem in the desert.

The Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) is about midway between the the too-high and too-low lines. About a year ago it was in danger of getting too high.

The anxiety is that the Kinneret wasn’t replenished as much this winter, not that it’s critical right now.


14 posted on 05/31/2014 9:45:18 AM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: ckilmer

I’m sure the Palis are salivating over the value of the scrap metals they could obtain and sell if they were to capture this plant, destroy and dismantle it.


15 posted on 05/31/2014 9:49:16 AM PDT by Attention Surplus Disorder (At no time was the Obama administration aware of what the Obama administration was doing)
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To: DoughtyOne

The world’s water is steadily accreting in Antarctica.

There hasn’t been a single year in our lifetimes that the depth of ice in Antarctica has failed to increase.

If we want cheap fresh water, we need to mine it in Antarctica; we’ll never run out.
.


16 posted on 05/31/2014 9:49:19 AM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: BipolarBob; SierraWasp

“I wonder if Californians wouldn’t benefit from reading FR articles like this.”

Nope! The rat bastards, who live in LA and Follywood control the state’s water via the legislature and Moonbeam. They get the water cheaper than we do up north where the water comes from. So there is no reason for them to build desalination plants.

It is funny how the enviro Nazis never try to shut down the water going from N. California to S. California.

We are still living the theme of Chinatown.


17 posted on 05/31/2014 9:52:47 AM PDT by Grampa Dave ( Herr Obama will not divert resources from his war on Americans to help Veterans!)
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To: DoughtyOne

“Not many Californians want the high speed rail.”

Obviously not enough, care enough, to try to stop it, either.


18 posted on 05/31/2014 9:53:21 AM PDT by tcrlaf (Q)
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To: DoughtyOne
Thanks for posting a breath of sanity and clarity from S. California re water.

"I also believe there is need for this nationwide. Fresh water is in high demand nationwide. As the population grows, alternative sources such as this will help releave presures in our interior, as coastal demands are met with desalinization. California can be used as a good example. The California Water Aquaduct brings water down from Northern California to Southern California. The transfers of water leave Northern California lakes below their normal levels. If Southern California would man up and develop the full potential of desalinization, Northern California would be a lot better positioned as well. Pressures on the Colorado River would also be abated." Unfortunately, until the enviro whackos turn against S California re where they get their water, your thoughts of sanity will never happen.

19 posted on 05/31/2014 9:55:38 AM PDT by Grampa Dave ( Herr Obama will not divert resources from his war on Americans to help Veterans!)
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To: ckilmer

>> “Situated in the heart of the Middle East...” <<

.
Another stupid, ignorant error!

Not only is Israel not “in the heart of the Middle East,” it isn’t even near the Middle East.

The Middle East begins at the Euphrates river, and its “heart” is thousands of miles east of that. India is the heart of the Middle East.


20 posted on 05/31/2014 9:56:23 AM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: ckilmer

If I remember correctly, my bill for water in Oregon was more expensive than this.


21 posted on 05/31/2014 9:56:36 AM PDT by Zathras
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To: Grampa Dave; BipolarBob; SierraWasp

The politics of water in California are definitely not Left - Right.

It is Real Estate development vs. the people, pure and simple. The left would love to deny water to agriculture, because that fits in with their Death Culture “spirituality,” but they never seem to see the unbridled development for what it is. (and I’m a surveyor that makes money off of development)


22 posted on 05/31/2014 10:04:22 AM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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Comment #23 Removed by Moderator

To: Zathras

And all of Oregon’s water needs are fully satisfied by just the nightly dew that condenses on the vegetation!
.


24 posted on 05/31/2014 10:09:00 AM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: ckilmer
Ran across this and thought it was an interesting idea.

Solar Roadways  LINK

S R Video  LINK


Ramirez's latest political cartoon LARGE VERSION
05/30/2014: LINK  LINK to regular sized version of Ramirez's latest, and an archive of his political cartoons.

In this political cartoon, Ramirez presents, "Obama: Foreign Policy"



FOLKS, THOSE OF YOU WHO CAN, PLEASE CLICK HERE AND PENCIL IN YOUR DONATION TO HELP END THIS FREEPATHONTHANK YOU!  We're over 92% now. Cool!
...this is a general all purpose message, and should not be seen as targeting any individual I am responding to...

25 posted on 05/31/2014 10:10:52 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: ckilmer
Moreover, Bromberg said desalination is not an end-all solution. The plants require immense amounts of energy, consuming roughly 10 percent of Israel's total electricity production, he said.

Yup. If you're near the ocean, all you need is energy and you can have clean water.

The exact impact of desalination plants on the wider Mediterranean also isn't clear, he added. A number of countries, including Cyprus, Lebanon and Egypt, are either using or considering the use of desalination plants.

Waiting for the eco-nazis to step up on this one. I'm sure they'll be yelling about it soon enough.

Put a bunch of jews in the desert, and eventually you'll have a civilized oasis.

Put a bunch of muslims in the desert, and you eventually have dead muslims... and desert.

26 posted on 05/31/2014 10:11:26 AM PDT by zeugma (I have never seen anyone cross the street to avoid a black man in a suit.)
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To: editor-surveyor
Not only is Israel not “in the heart of the Middle East,” it isn’t even near the Middle East.

I was curious, so I checked. Wikipedia has a totally different geographical definition of "Middle East" than you do. And Webster's dictionary agrees with the Wikipedia definition.

So I guess learned people can differ here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_middle_east

27 posted on 05/31/2014 10:14:04 AM PDT by Leaning Right (Why am I holding this lantern? I am looking for the next Reagan.)
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To: BipolarBob

No, they would find an endangered oceanic microbe on the other side of the planet to protect.


28 posted on 05/31/2014 10:20:21 AM PDT by MaxMax (Pay Attention and you'll be pissed off too! FIRE BOEHNER, NOW!)
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To: Grampa Dave

http://web.carlsbadca.gov/services/departments/water/pages/seawaterdist.aspx

opening 2016


29 posted on 05/31/2014 10:20:48 AM PDT by morphing libertarian ( On to impeachment and removal (IRS, Benghazi)!!!)
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To: All


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30 posted on 05/31/2014 10:24:10 AM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: Jeff Chandler

And some Really Good News . . .
.....
Yeah that’s the good stuff. Or anyhow graphene is the latest membranes touted as being the great solution. A couple years ago it was carbon nano tubes.

Meanwhile somehow the Israelis are able to do desalination plants for $600@acre foot. Whereas the Poseidon Plant in Carlsbad California may clock in at $2000 @ acre foot.


31 posted on 05/31/2014 10:41:20 AM PDT by ckilmer
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To: DoughtyOne

the shame is that the genius people in silicon valley don’t think about cheap desalination as the future of california.


32 posted on 05/31/2014 10:42:56 AM PDT by ckilmer
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To: ckilmer

Read in it’s entirety, the article is pointing out what a horrible thing Israel’s desalination program is.

Dumping brine, unfair to the Philistines, using too much electricity, it’s a long list of evils that Gods Chosen People have embarked upon.


33 posted on 05/31/2014 10:52:42 AM PDT by Balding_Eagle (Want to keep your doctor? Remove your Democrat Senator.)
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To: ckilmer

You may have a very good reason for saying that. I would look more to the mayors and city councils of Southern California cities, that are far too short-sighted and limited in their ability to think outside the box.

Sacramento doesn’t help any either. They’re too focused on saving citizens from gun ownership.


34 posted on 05/31/2014 10:58:42 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: ckilmer

Hmm, maybe use that water to make the deserts bloom?

Ezekiel 36:35

35 And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like vthe garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited.


35 posted on 05/31/2014 11:01:05 AM PDT by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: editor-surveyor

You’ve got a good point there. I still wonder if it isn’t best to simply start desalinizing on location. If Israel has brought the cost down this far, it seems like time to do this on a large scale around the world.


36 posted on 05/31/2014 11:26:11 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: tcrlaf

In the beginning Californians were promised a total cost of less than 10% what the total bill will turn out to be. Folks bought in on that.

Now the stupid thing has a life of it’s own. The state government (Extremely Leftist) is behind it, at the urging of unions who want the government contracts.

The question is, how do you stop nonsense like this when the money spigot is turned on?


37 posted on 05/31/2014 11:28:35 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: Grampa Dave

Thanks Grandpa Dave.

I appreciate your agreement, and agree with your conclusion as well.


38 posted on 05/31/2014 11:29:41 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: Leaning Right

Israel is by definition the Near East. That is all of the shemitic nations actually.

Middle East is between the Far East (China, etc.) and the Near East.

Wikipedia is a leftist joke.

All of my dictionaries say that the Persian and Hindi nations are the Middle East.


39 posted on 05/31/2014 12:02:04 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: ckilmer

Al Gore’s rising sea level problem solved.

Next


40 posted on 05/31/2014 12:03:35 PM PDT by WildWeasel
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To: TexasFreeper2009

They are

http://www.ide-tech.com/case-study/carlsbad-germany-project/


41 posted on 05/31/2014 12:20:48 PM PDT by Lurkina.n.Learnin
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To: zeugma
The plants require immense amounts of energy, consuming roughly 10 percent of Israel's total electricity production, he said.

Small price to pay. The total motor rating at the Edmonston Pumping Plant on the Ca aquaduct is 1,120,000 hp or 835MW. No, that's not used all at once but it's there if they need it. That's just to move water up a mountain to the other side, not production.

42 posted on 05/31/2014 12:23:11 PM PDT by mikey_hates_everything
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To: editor-surveyor

Some years ago plans were developed to have large tugboats tow icebergs to Saudi Arabia.


43 posted on 05/31/2014 1:31:45 PM PDT by Maine Mariner
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To: editor-surveyor
Not only is Israel not “in the heart of the Middle East,” it isn’t even near the Middle East.

Some might fairly debate you with regard to whether Israel is considered to be geographically part of the Middle East, but that point aside, if not the "heart," might it be more correct to say the "brains" of the Middle East?

FReegards!

 photo million-vet-march.jpg

44 posted on 05/31/2014 1:40:10 PM PDT by Agamemnon (Darwinism is the glue that holds liberalism together)
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To: piytar

well, yeah, after the formation of Israel, the next big thing that precedes the end of the world is that the deserts are all be turned green.

What turns the deserts green is the collapse of desalination costs (which includes the collapse of energy costs). Desalination costs have been falling in half about once decade.

Right now there are couple developments in the works that may/likely/will speed the decline rate of desalination costs— including lftr thorium reactors which will collapse the cost of energy and graphene membranes.


45 posted on 05/31/2014 2:10:15 PM PDT by ckilmer
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To: mikey_hates_everything

Small price to pay. The total motor rating at the Edmonston Pumping Plant on the Ca aquaduct is 1,120,000 hp or 835MW. No, that’s not used all at once but it’s there if they need it. That’s just to move water up a mountain to the other side, not production.
.................
You’d think that somewhere along the line they’d figure out how to put a propeller and generator in the pipes so that as the water moved back downhill they could recover the energy they used to move the water uphill.


46 posted on 05/31/2014 2:17:23 PM PDT by ckilmer
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To: ckilmer

The real key here is energy. What was described in the article is reverse osmosis, which consumes a lot of energy.

However, there is a new technology that desalinates just as much water but uses a quarter of the energy. The secret is in nanotechnology.

Imagine a pipe that looked like it was lined with carbon. But the carbon is actually nanotubes, small pipes just large enough to pass single molecules of water at a time, nothing larger.

The water filtered through is actually not good to drink, as it is deionized and degassed. So to be used as drinking water, it needs to have a little bit of sea salt added, then aerated.

In any event, the pipes are easy to clean and low maintenance. You still need the energy to pump the salt water to the plant, and the energy to pump the now fresh water from the plant.


47 posted on 05/31/2014 2:19:31 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("Don't compare me to the almighty, compare me to the alternative." -Obama, 09-24-11)
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To: Balding_Eagle

Read in it’s entirety, the article is pointing out what a horrible thing Israel’s desalination program is.

Dumping brine, unfair to the Philistines, using too much electricity, it’s a long list of evils that Gods Chosen People have embarked upon.
..............
Yeah its about inoculating California liberals from charges of hopeless stupidity and incompetence.


48 posted on 05/31/2014 2:19:42 PM PDT by ckilmer
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To: BipolarBob

I had the same idea. If California took care of its water needs from the Pacific, that would free up the enormous amounts they get from neighboring states which could go for irrigation, etc. inland.

Then I thought about the hoops they’d have to jump through to get the permits to build a desalination plant, and hopes grew dim.


49 posted on 05/31/2014 2:22:12 PM PDT by Tucker39 (Welcome to America! Now speak English; and keep to the right....In driving, in Faith, and in politic)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy

I don’t disagree with you. I luv the promise of carbon nanotubes and more recently graphene. So far they have been just promises. But the science of materials research is moving so profoundly these days that somewhere in the next decade something is going to give in a big way.

On the energy side—there is an immense amount of smoke and excitement coming out of nuclear energy research people these days that suggests — in under a decade or so some big breaks will be made to collapse the cost of energy. (this compares with fusion energy which has been 20 years off for the last 50 years.)


50 posted on 05/31/2014 2:27:10 PM PDT by ckilmer
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