Australia, the world’s driest continent, built its first desalination plant in 1903. Today, its five biggest cities are spending at least $13.2 billion on such facilities, which provide a considerable part of their drinking water needs.
The method has been widely criticized, for being polluting, energy-intensive, addressing only the supply-side and acting as a disincentive to water conservation. Nevertheless, recent research suggests that most Australians accept desalination as necessary for water security.
Through this series of videos, SA Water (South Australia) argues that desalination is key to achieving water security, and that desalination plants can offset inherent disadvantages by investing in environment conservation and community involvement. A counter-argument is provided in this Al Jazeera report on how desalination plants around the Persian Gulf have failed to check marine pollution despite all their promises and efforts.
What do you think?