Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Doubts on the value of desalination plant for Adelaide

Given the plant will be one of the top 10 users of electricity in the state, Parnell wants the Government to commission an equivalent amount of new renewable energy to put into the grid……Gulf is being exposed to further damage to its marine life and sea grasses from excessive salinity and ultimately deoxygenated water………….

Will desal be worth its salt? | Adelaide Now, 22 Jan 2011, “……….The plant’s appetite is enormous. While Port Stanvac is better than some, it still takes 2.1 litres of seawater to produce a litre of fresh.When fully operational at the end of next year, the 100GL plant will suck in around 260 Olympic swimming pools of seawater a day and transform them into 120 swimming pools of clean water.The unwanted 140 pools of hyper-saline waste will be dispersed in the Gulf through an outfall pipe 2.5km out to sea…………..

when Happy Valley is full of desalinated water, any new rain flowing into our reservoirs will run out to sea while we pay top price for the high-tech water out of our taps.

…….THE second catch is that the privately owned Adelaide Aqua consortium still has to make money when the plant sits idle.

In Victoria, there has been outrage over the cost to taxpayers when their 150GL desalination plant at Wonthaggi is not being used. Here, we have been promised the so-called “take (water) or pay” provision will not apply. But something similar will be going on.

Adelaide Aqua is a commercial operation and its 20-year contract to run the plant makes sure its interests are covered.

When the plant is running at full capacity, it will cost SA $130 million a year to run. When it is mothballed and producing nothing, it will still cost $30 million. Which means we would still be liable to pay Adelaide Aqua more than $500 million over the 20 years if it did not produce a drop……

THE plant’s green credentials have helped make this project politically palatable. Desalinated water takes so much energy to create it is derided as “bottled electricity” and almost half its cost is energy.

The Rann Government has committed to a “carbon neutral” plant, meaning the power to run it will come from renewable energy sources. The Greens already lament what could have been achieved if $1.8 billion was spent on stormwater harvesting and water re-use.

But Greens MLC Mark Parnell also questions the depth of the carbon neutral claim.

“Carbon neutrality is the biggest growing area of fraudulent claims in the environment field,” Parnell says. “The question is, are they simply taking renewable energy that other people then can’t buy?”

Given the plant will be one of the top 10 users of electricity in the state, Parnell wants the Government to commission an equivalent amount of new renewable energy to put into the grid.

“My point is, if we are adding a new demand to the electricity grid, we need to add additional supply to the grid of electricity that is renewable,” Parnell says…….Flinders University marine scientist Dr Jochem Kempf is sceptical. He thinks the Gulf is being exposed to further damage to its marine life and sea grasses from excessive salinity and ultimately deoxygenated water………….

Will desal be worth its salt? | Adelaide Now

January 22, 2011 - Posted by | South Australia, water | ,

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