Can we use brackish water as a resource?
Brackish water has a chloride content greater than 400 mg/l and an electrical conductivity greater than 1.5 dS/m. There is a lot of brackish groundwater out there, mostly in complex groundwater systems.
Brackish water has a salinity level that is between that of seawater and that of freshwater. It occurs in deep "fossil aquifers," where salt dissolves from mineral deposits over time as precipitation percolates down into aquifers, and where surface or groundwater mixes with seawater. Brackish water has historically been undervalued. While it is used for irrigation in some parts of the world, most industries cannot use it because it damages equipment and is not fit for human or livestock consumption.
However, as the cost of desalination has decreased and freshwater resources have become severely depleted, many decision-makers are reconsidering brackish water desalination. After all, brackish water is much easier to desalinate than seawater.
What is Salinity?
Salinity is the amount of salt in water, and it is measured by evaporation and weighing or by a more convenient but less accurate electrical conductivity (EC) test, which measures how easily electric current passes through the water.
Saline agriculture allows for the possibility of:
· Crops can be grown all year.
· Irrigate with saline water resources.
· Improve and repurpose degraded farmland (due to soil salinity).
Groundwater that is brackish
Whatever definition is used, there is a large amount of salty water on the planet that cannot be used without desalination.
According to some studies, much more groundwater is brackish than previously thought. It was reported in 2018 that aquifer transitions — from higher freshwater zones to lower, more saline zones — are much closer to the surface than previously thought. Deeper drilling is no longer an option, as many had hoped.
What is the purpose of brackish groundwater?
Industry and public drinking-water providers are increasingly turning to brackish groundwater to supplement or replace freshwater use. Brackish groundwater is used either directly or indirectly.
Direct use: Brackish groundwater is directly used for a variety of purposes, including cooling water for power generation, aquaculture, and drilling, enhanced recovery, and hydraulic fracturing in the oil and gas industry.
Treated Use: Brackish water is treated using reverse osmosis or other desalination processes for purposes requiring lower dissolved-solids content, particularly drinking water.
Intrusion of Saltwater
As freshwater municipal drinking and agricultural irrigation water wells frequently draw from groundwater supplies, saline water contamination poses a global threat, especially near coastlines where nearby seawater is drawn in to fill the void.
Use in Industry
Desalinated brackish water is used for more than just drinking. Power generators are cooled by salty water pumped from underground sources. The thermoelectric-power industry can store and use more than 95 percent of the saline water drawn from groundwater. The remaining 5% could be put to use in mining and other industries.
In some areas where seawater desalination has been controversial and challenged by officials or the public, brackish water desalination has filled the need for an alternative source of fresh water. Because brackish water can be treated to provide a reliable source of drinking water, more businesses and communities are looking into brackish water desalination as a practical way to avoid water scarcity.
What can Netsol Water provide?
Netsol Water is a significant water and wastewater treatment firm in India, offering WTP, WWTP, STP, ETP, RO Plant manufacture, among other services. The company creates equipment’s and is committed to providing practical solutions that help businesses flourish. We are committed to providing our valued customers with hands-on service, expert counselling, and training.
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