The future supply of fresh water is becoming a concern in the developed world and in particular in countries in the MENA region where the situation is dramatic. There, its scarcity has made it an invaluable resource for centuries, a situation that is aggravated by the region’s changing demography, industry and living standards. In many countries throughout the MENA region large amounts of freshwater are currently produced by desalinating seawater, using expensive fossil fuel energy as the main energy source. In most cases, fuel is supplied from the country’s own oil and gas resources or, even worse, from imported fuels.
The unique properties of CSP, along with the excellent solar resource found in the MENA region, offer a huge opportunity for CSP technologies to provide reliable fresh water production, either through thermal processes (Multi-Effect Distillation) or through electricity driven processes (Multi-Stage Flash), replacing the use of fossil fuels.
Article published in: FuturENERGY October 2013