How big a desalination plant?

06/03/2014 7:06 PM

06/04/2014 9:16 AM

Re "Desalination plants the answer" (Letters, June 2): A large number of exceedingly large desalination plants must be built to satisfy California’s daily water consumption.

The largest plants in the world produce water in the 100 million to 250 million gallon per day range. The California Aqueduct moves some 8 trillion gallons per day at full flow. We have a large gap here.

Another writer talks about water resource engineering features to transport water from the Columbia River outflow system. That is more doable, and brings us to flow levels capable of moderating the existing reservoir levels year round. The most important thing about new water flow would be the ability to replenish aquifer levels.

The North American Water And Power Alliance is a well-scoped and feasible incremental engineering plan for saving agriculture in California and Midwest breadbasket aquifer systems. Qualms about reduced freshwater flow to the ocean will be lessened as aquifers recover and NAWAPA flows diminish.

-- Gunnar Henrioulle, Colfax

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