AWWA WQTC64181

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Colorado Issues Involving Disposal of Membrane ConcentrateMickley, Mike Edition: Vol. - No.
American Water Works Association / 01-Nov-2006 / 18 pages

Growing population coupled with limited freshwater resources is forcing many Coloradomunicipalities to consider membrane desalination of lower quality resources to provide potablewater. In locations where traditional concentrate disposal options are feasible, the time, effort,and cost of implementing these options are increasing. Thus, while membrane desalinationproduction costs have been decreasing due to technological advances and competition,concentrate management costs have grown and thus concentrate management costs are becominga larger fraction of total plant cost. As more and more municipalities are discovering,concentrate disposal can be expensive and can be the critical factor in determining desalinationplant feasibility. With these challenges it is imperative that concentrate management beconsidered early in desalination project planning to avoid later project delays.The challenges are most critical in the Denver Basin where desalination plants of medium andlarge size are not being built because cost effective concentrate disposal solutions cannot befound.This paper reviews the broad context of municipal desalination plant concentrate disposal in theUnited States and then focuses on the disposal challenges specific to the Denver Basin. Thepaper borrows substantially from a forthcoming book entitled "Membrane DesalinationTechnology" for which the author contributed a chapter on concentrate disposal. Includes 14 references, tables, figures.

Keywords: Costs; Desalination; Management; Membranes; Denver, Colorado; Planning; Wastes




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