Environmental Protection

Scarcity Drives Desalination, Frost & Sullivan Says

 Water is only going to become more scarce ,and many governments are looking at desalination and investing in this technology to supply water to their populations. These factors are driving the desalination market that shows a strong growth, according to a June 30 press release from Frost & Sullivan.

The focus is particularly high in the Mediterranean region where water scarcity is severe. Frost & Sullivan will soon publish a comprehensive study on the Spanish water market with trends, challenges, and opportunities.

Why Spain? Frost & Sullivan Analyst Nuno Oscar Branco, who has been researching the market and conducting extensive interviews with market participants, said, “Spain is the largest desalination market in the Mediterranean region, but countries such as Algeria, Morocco, or Libya have joined the desalination bandwagon and are investing heavily on this source of fresh drinking water.”

Spain built its first desalinization plant in 1965 and was one of the first countries in the Mediterranean region to consider desalination as a viable solution to solve water shortage issues in large urban areas. “Spain is close to reaching the peak of its desalination programme and is on the forefront of the desalination markets, leading the way in employing new technologies and plant design,” Branco said.

Spurred by the PROGRAMA A.G.U.A., Spain has an estimated investment plan of about $5.5 billion for the period 2004 to 2015 in desalinization treatment plants in an effort to increase the production capacity of fresh water by 1,100 hm<sup>3</sup> per year.

Investments by the Spanish government in the water infrastructure is proving to be a good opportunity for EPC companies, construction companies, project engineering firms, and technology providers. “The Spanish desalination market still offers opportunities for local and international companies that have expertise especially in key areas of energy efficiency as well as process and operation optimization,” according to Branco.

Desalination is looking at the opportunity of going green through renewable energy options. And in fact, there are technologies already available that would use wind or off-shore solar power units as their energy source for desalination.

For more information on the Water Market in Spain and in the rest of the Mediterranean region and to receive a complimentary insight of the market, contact Chiara Carella, Frost & Sullivan Corporate Communications, at chiara.carella@frost.com.

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