Desalination plant may be reactivated to address drought impact

| by Larry Acker
Desalination plant may be reactivated to address drought impact

In a Feb. 23, 2015 FoxNews report, Rebecca Baork, Santa Barbara, California director of public works, said their two-decade old desalination plant may be considered as a last resort to address the ongoing drought conditions impacting their community. The plant had a short-lived operating life back in 1991 when it was completed just at a time when heavy rains in 1991 ended a severe drought.   

It was effective then, but the rains made it not needed. So it was put in a “long-term storage mode”.  Today, Santa Barbara is considering dusting off the Charles Meyer Desalination Plant, which may cost upwards of $40 million to replace filters, create an engineering plan and do major upgrades.

Consumers face a considerable spike in their water cost. Their usual water sources, such as Lake Cachuma and Gibraltar Reservoir, provided water at a cost of about $100 per 326,000 gallons. Desalination plants typically send an invoice for $1,500 for the same amount of water. 

There are environmental impacts from sucking up fish eggs to depositing high concentrations of salt brine back in to ecosystem.  As the director of public works said, “We’re glad we have it, but I wish it would rain.” 


Topics: Sinks & Toilets, Water Saving Devices

Companies: ACT D'MAND Systems

Larry Acker
Larry Acker is the CEO of ACT, Inc. D'MAND Kontrol Systems®. Involved with energy, water and energy conservation for 45 years, Larry is considered a leading authority regarding residential water and energy efficiency. Larry has been a featured speaker at major conferences throughout the world supporting ASHRAE, IAMPO, AWWA, ACEEE, PHCC and SB-08. Larry has written featured articles for National Trade Magazines and was the Chairman of the Pacific Coast Builders Conference in 2001. www

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