Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 545175
Title The state of desalination and brine production : A global outlook
Author(s) Jones, Edward; Qadir, Manzoor; Vliet, Michelle T.H. van; Smakhtin, Vladimir; Kang, Seong Mu
Source Science of the Total Environment 657 (2019). - ISSN 0048-9697 - p. 1343 - 1356.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.12.076
Department(s) Water Systems and Global Change
WIMEK
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019
Keyword(s) Concentrate stream - Desalination technology - Feedwater type - Product water - Recovery ratio
Abstract

Rising water demands and diminishing water supplies are exacerbating water scarcity in most world regions. Conventional approaches relying on rainfall and river runoff in water scarce areas are no longer sufficient to meet human demands. Unconventional water resources, such as desalinated water, are expected to play a key role in narrowing the water demand-supply gap. Our synthesis of desalination data suggests that there are 15,906 operational desalination plants producing around 95 million m3/day of desalinated water for human use, of which 48% is produced in the Middle East and North Africa region. A major challenge associated with desalination technologies is the production of a typically hypersaline concentrate (termed ‘brine’) discharge that requires disposal, which is both costly and associated with negative environmental impacts. Our estimates reveal brine production to be around 142 million m3/day, approximately 50% greater than previous quantifications. Brine production in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait and Qatar accounts for 55% of the total global share. Improved brine management strategies are required to limit the negative environmental impacts and reduce the economic cost of disposal, thereby stimulating further developments in desalination facilities to safeguard water supplies for current and future generations.

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