Addressing desalination’s carbon footprint: The Israeli experience

Given the extraordinary proliferation of seawater desalination plants, Israel’s transition to become a country that almost exclusively relies on desalination for municipal water supply is instructive as a case study, especially given concerns about the technology’s prodigious carbon footprint. This article offers a detailed description of the country’s desal experience with a focus on the associated energy requirements, environmental policies and perspectives of decision makers. Israel’s desalination plants are arguably the most energy-efficient in the world. The present consensus among government engineers, however, is that meaningful improvements in energy efficiency are unlikely in the foreseeable future.

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