To desal or not? Ocean water may be last resort for drought-stricken CA
The California Coastal Commission recently approved the construction of two more desalination plants, one near Monterey, and one by Dana Point. This adds to the four already providing drinking water in the state. But in 2020, this same commission advised not to build the Monterey plant. What changed? The state has faced its driest three years on record, and it needs more potable water for its almost 40 million residents, especially the ones living on the coast. … Many countries in the Middle East, and even parts of the United States, rely almost exclusively on desalinated water, which is ocean water with the salt and other impurities removed. Nevertheless, there are significant costs in terms of energy needed for the desalination process and environmental damage. In the case of the plant near Monterey, local residents complained about other factors too.