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Tampa Bay Desal Plant Gets $31M For Achieving Water Goals

desalination plantThe Tampa Bay Seawater Desalination Facility is getting $31.25 million from the Southwest Florida Water Management District after achieving goals in water treatment.

The funds had been promised to Tampa Bay Water, owner of the desalination plant, on the condition that it produce 25 million gallons of water a day for 120 days in a row. Additionally, the plant had to have shown an average of 20 million gallons of water over a 12 month period, according to a press release.

When it’s producing 25 million gallons of water a day, the plant is capable of providing 10 percent of the Tampa Bay area’s potable water needs.

Over the past two years, as production has ramped up, the plant has produced more than 18 billion gallons of water.

The plant is operated by American Water and Acciona Agua through the joint venture American Water — Acciona Agua LLC.

The plant, which is the largest in the U.S., has a troubled history. Three companies involved in its creation went bankrupt and there was a dispute in Federal courts over its ownership, according to Water-Technology.

It took six years longer than expected to complete the plant, which was put in place to reduce demand on the region’s aquifers.

Another major desalination plant is beginning construction in Carlsbad, Calif., reports the Telescope.

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One thought on “Tampa Bay Desal Plant Gets $31M For Achieving Water Goals

  1. I am an environmentalist that cannot see how these plants are bad for the environment. When you analyse all the options to supply water, this is the best. Other options like dams, canals, pulling water out of the Sacramento Delta, etc are far worse. Pulling fish or other organisms into the pipes is easily solved with screens, barriers, repellers and the like. Unlike the article says, it doesn’t have to be them versus us. Recycling water is also a great idea, but it still needs to be purified through plants similar to these. There are water losses that have to be made up from some source. And since much of this loss is water flushed out to the ocean, it is not a real loss. Also, since a major climate change threat is the reduction of salt content the ocean, the water returned from the plants actually help increase the salinity. As the number of these plants increase, the power, costs and problems will be reduced. The energy required can come from many renewable sources and actually, few people realize that the power to pump water from the Delta for Southern California consumes over 3% of all power in CA!! With the proposed Around the Delta Conveyance, this power use will more than double. I think if we did the math, desalination is significantly cheaper and definitely more sustainable, as the Delta has no water to send south.

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