An assessment of Best Available Technologies for Desalination in Rural areas was undertaken with the aim to serve as a tool for decision makers for selecting the most suited technologies that fit their rural settings.
The report describes the latest technologies with an emphasis on small-scale innovation relevant to rural areas, it goes further to describe renewable energy resources (RES) that are appropriate for use in the PCs in combination with desalination technologies (sections 2.2 and 2.3) and finally details technical and non-technical criteria for a successful project.
Understanding the characteristics of rural areas is crucial in the technology selection process. The assessment then cross-matches the characteristics of rural areas with the specifications of desalination plants and RES to select the best fit amalgam. The characteristics of the rural areas to be supplied with desalinated water play an important role in the choice of technology and its accompanying renewable energy supply system. Several combinations, identified in the report, are possible and accordingly different rural conditions can be catered for. Since there is no “one fits all solution” the assessment provides the decision makers with a technology screening and selection tool. The report recommends, that after the final analysis, the technology that is mature, cheapest and easiest to operate be selected. Policy and strategic frameworks are a requirement for proper expansion of desalination plants. The report, consequently, provides guidelines for integrating desalination with renewable energy into IWRM plans.