Process Safety and Environmental Protection | VOL. 147

Energy consumption and environmental impact assessment of desalination plants and brine disposal strategies

Publication Date Mar 1, 2021


Abstract Nowadays, desalination plants are considered as tools to utilize water from different natural resources such as seawater and brackish water. Globally, the number of desalination plants are increasing to achieve the high demand for fresh water to be used for human consumption, industrial activities, and public services. However, the brine discharged will have detrimental effect on the marine environment, and thus the brine should be reused, treated, or discharged properly. The present study aims to give a comprehensive insight into the current development of the desalination process through examining the different technologies available, energy consumption, water production costs of these technologies and the brine water characteristics. Several brine disposal strategies are analysed here and compared to evaluate their effectiveness and drawbacks. The potential usages of brine are also carefully examined. Also, we discuss the zero-liquid discharge (ZLD) method, its benefits, challenges, environmental and operating characteristics, and the current progress of research in this field. Ultimately, the future research and development strategies for the concentrate management are briefly analysed. It was noted that the ZLD process is very significant to the environment in terms of reducing the pollution caused by discharged brine and achieving sustainability.


Zero-liquid Discharge Process Zero-liquid Discharge Energy Consumption High Demand For Water Desalination Plants Brackish Water Industrial Activities Marine Environment Consumption Of Plants Public Services

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