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Australian city raises water rates to pay for desalination plant.

Old 12-08-07, 08:55 PM
  #1  
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Australian city raises water rates to pay for desalination plant.

I think it's a great idea to raise water rates to pay for a desalination plant.


http://www.news.com.au/adelaidenow/s...l?from=mostpop

Water prices to rise and desalination plant set for Port Stanvac

GREG KELTON, MICHAEL OWEN

December 05, 2007 10:20pm

THE price of household water will rise about 12.7 per cent a year for the next four years to pay for a $1.1 billion desalination plant at Port Stanvac. This will raise the average household annual bill of $329 to $523 by 2011. The new pricing structure, announced yesterday by Premier Mike Rann, will force big consumers to pay considerably more.

Households using less than 120 kilolitres a year face a 42 per cent rise from July 1 next year, from 50c to 71c a kilolitre.

For between 120 and 520kL, householders will pay $1.38 (up from $1.16).

Under a new third tier, water will cost $1.65/kL for consumption that exceeds 520kL.

Further increases averaging 12.7 per cent are likely over the next four years, the Government said.

A separate supply charge, now $160 a year, has not increased, but there is no guarantee it will not rise.

Businesses will pay the same rate per kilolitre as households but they pay higher annual supply charges based on property value, with a minimum charge of $174.65.

The desalination plant, to be built on the site of the old Mobil petrol refinery, will provide 50 gigalitres of water to Adelaide a year.

'It will be pumped through a new pipeline, costing $305 million, into Adelaide's existing metropolitan reservoir system.

The plant will have the capacity to be expanded to 100 gigalitres a year.

It was part of a $2.5 billion water security package unveiled yesterday by Mr Rann, Treasurer Kevin Foley and Water Security Minister Karlene Maywald.

"Building a desalination plant is an extremely complex and expensive undertaking and we must now focus on paying for this important investment in securing our water supply into the future," Mr Rann said.
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Old 12-08-07, 09:05 PM
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Good idea, if needed
other wise just overkill
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Old 12-08-07, 10:01 PM
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I hate to say it, but I agree with grundle.

Australia is semi arid in a lot of it's land mass and does not have a lot of sources of fresh water, so I think this is a good idea. Desalination is the wave of the future for their water needs and they need to pay for it somehow.
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Old 12-09-07, 05:23 AM
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They make all the sense in the world.

I remember stories about Desalination Plant(s?) in the Middle East in during Desert Storm back in the 90's. I guess having huge profits from oil helps to make these a reality out there.
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Old 12-09-07, 06:09 AM
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Yeah, having all the oil reserves in the world helps with the enormous energy requirements of these plants.

We use all our water to grow corn for ethanol. They use all their oil to take the salt out of sea water. Makes perfect sense.
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Old 12-10-07, 03:42 PM
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Wow! So far, no one has disagreed with me!
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Old 12-10-07, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
Wow! So far, no one has disagreed with me!
Is that like the perfect grundle thread? Remember, showmanship. Exit on a high note. "It's been a great night, so long everybody!"*

*The above has been paraphrased from Seinfeld for all the Seinfeld challenged people out there
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Old 12-10-07, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
Wow! So far, no one has disagreed with me!
Not sure what you expected people to say. Unless there's a poster from Adelaide here who's pissed his water bill is going up or something.
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Old 12-10-07, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Groucho
Not sure what you expected people to say.
Water is wet.

1. Yes!
2. No!
3. I Don't Know!
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Old 12-10-07, 04:35 PM
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13 cents a year for potable water? Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.
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Old 12-10-07, 07:08 PM
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Somebody voted no.

The thread is ruined.
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Old 12-10-07, 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by DVD Josh
13 cents a year for potable water? Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.
That's how I read it at first as well, but it's actually a 13% increase per year -- they wrote it "per cent" -- and that's for 4 years AFTER an initial 42% increase in cost. I'm not great at math, but presumably working off the base water prices, I guess the total ends up being an increase of 94% over 5 years -- pretty hefty overall, but perhaps still cheap in the long run.
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Old 12-10-07, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
Wow! So far, no one has disagreed with me!
Originally Posted by VinVega
Is that like the perfect grundle thread?
No. It's the exact opposite.

This thread is boring.

This thread sucks.

This thread is CLOSED.
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Old 12-31-07, 10:10 AM
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I missed this thread during my self-imposed exile, so I thought I would dig it up from the dead.

There is a much larger question -- the future of potable water internationally. All along the Southeast, we have seen massive drought conditions lead to tighter and tighter water restrictions. The West and the Southwest have been aware of these issues for years; elsewhere in the world, from India to China to Africa and South America, proper water treatment is a luxury too many countries cannot afford.

But let's keep the focus on America for now. If you lived in an area at risk of a severe water shortage -- which translates into pretty much any urban area -- would you be in favor of paying a premium for water (15-20% increase) over a 20-year period if the money were to go toward building a reverse-osmosis desalination plant and water-delivery system? What about if you paid a premium simply to pay for rehab and maintenance of existing water and sewer lines? Finally, what if you were asked to pay more for water simply as a means of enforcing water conservation?

At what point (if any) would you draw the line?
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Old 12-31-07, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by NCMojo
I missed this thread during my self-imposed exile, so I thought I would dig it up from the dead.

There is a much larger question -- the future of potable water internationally. All along the Southeast, we have seen massive drought conditions lead to tighter and tighter water restrictions. The West and the Southwest have been aware of these issues for years; elsewhere in the world, from India to China to Africa and South America, proper water treatment is a luxury too many countries cannot afford.

But let's keep the focus on America for now. If you lived in an area at risk of a severe water shortage -- which translates into pretty much any urban area -- would you be in favor of paying a premium for water (15-20% increase) over a 20-year period if the money were to go toward building a reverse-osmosis desalination plant and water-delivery system? What about if you paid a premium simply to pay for rehab and maintenance of existing water and sewer lines? Finally, what if you were asked to pay more for water simply as a means of enforcing water conservation?

At what point (if any) would you draw the line?
If it's a public discussion, I can't see it not happening if it's a choice between water and no water. In the US however, the bigger question would probably involve how much the community can soak the gov't (state/federal) to pay for it.

It makes sense overall though - I'd probably be for it assuming all things were held equal - as far as distribution, etc. I'd probably want the aforementioned maintenance in conjunction with the plant upgrades in order to ensure maximum efficiency although that would almost certainly cost more up front.
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Old 12-31-07, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by NCMojo
But let's keep the focus on America for now. If you lived in an area at risk of a severe water shortage -- which translates into pretty much any urban area -- would you be in favor of paying a premium for water (15-20% increase) over a 20-year period if the money were to go toward building a reverse-osmosis desalination plant and water-delivery system?
Depends. Is a plant needed? Will that remove the risk? How much does it cost compared to expected benefit. If it makes sense economically, then sure.

What about if you paid a premium simply to pay for rehab and maintenance of existing water and sewer lines?
If it was needed to keep everything running and reduce the risk of a shortage, then sure. My area's been under water restriction for the last two summers as they fix/rehab the infrastructure. Annoying, but I understand.

Finally, what if you were asked to pay more for water simply as a means of enforcing water conservation?
I'd prefer that they just raise the prices when water is scarce. What is the need for this pre-emptive price increase?
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Old 12-31-07, 08:46 PM
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Originally Posted by NCMojo
I missed this thread during my self-imposed exile, so I thought I would dig it up from the dead.

There is a much larger question -- the future of potable water internationally. All along the Southeast, we have seen massive drought conditions lead to tighter and tighter water restrictions. The West and the Southwest have been aware of these issues for years; elsewhere in the world, from India to China to Africa and South America, proper water treatment is a luxury too many countries cannot afford.

But let's keep the focus on America for now. If you lived in an area at risk of a severe water shortage -- which translates into pretty much any urban area -- would you be in favor of paying a premium for water (15-20% increase) over a 20-year period if the money were to go toward building a reverse-osmosis desalination plant and water-delivery system? What about if you paid a premium simply to pay for rehab and maintenance of existing water and sewer lines? Finally, what if you were asked to pay more for water simply as a means of enforcing water conservation?

At what point (if any) would you draw the line?

I'd be happy to pay an extra penny per gallon.

Speaking of the southeastern U.S.:


http://www2.tbo.com/content/2007/dec...ination-plant/

Applause, At Last, For Desalination Plant

The Tampa Tribune

Published: December 22, 2007

Tampa Bay Water's desalination plant is finally up and running, four years late.

Nothing seemed to go right on the project, watched by water-restricted communities around the world.

Bankruptcies, lawsuits, even exotic snails that clogged filters plagued the venture.

But the plant now is operating without interruption, transforming Tampa Bay's brackish water into pristine drinking water at the rate of 25 million gallons a day.

The desalination plant's production represents 10 percent of the region's water supply. Most importantly, it's drought-proof water
that allows the utility to pump less groundwater and take less water from local rivers.

The plant, the largest currently operating in the nation, can be expanded to produce 35 million gallons of water a day.

No question, Tampa Bay Water made some blunders along the way, particularly in choosing its original partners and failing to recognize the importance of the pretreatment system. Project costs gushed from $110 million to $158 million.

But Tampa Bay Water's governing board deserves credit for sticking with the plan, sorting through the problems and making sure this alternative water resource became a success.

Thanks to the board's perseverance, the region has a water source that, regardless of rainfall, will help meet growing water needs without compromising natural resources.

Better late than never.
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Old 12-31-07, 08:51 PM
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I really like this!


http://www.ajc.com/opinion/content/o...esed_1226.html

THE DROUGHT

Why sweat? Tap nuclear power


By NOLAN HERTEL

Published on: 12/26/07

State governments looking for ways to cope with severe drought in the Southeast should consider using nuclear power to desalinate seawater. This is a safe and proven technology that the U.S. Navy has been using for more than a half-century to provide drinking water for the crews of its nuclear-powered submarines.

Until a few years ago, the water debate here in Georgia was conducted in an almost surreal atmosphere. We appeared to have sufficient supplies of water to meet our needs, and most of us seemed to feel that this state of affairs would continue indefinitely. By definition, miracles do not often happen, and it is not likely that the water problem will be solved by a miracle. The solution, if there is one, will be found in the development of comprehensive water use plans, strict conservation and technology. No one of these alone will solve our water problems, but all of them together have a good chance of succeeding.

The discrepancy between the need for water and its availability is seen not only in the difficulty of allocating scarce resources for households, industries, farms, electricity production, wildlife and recreation but also sharing common supplies with neighboring states. As our water resources diminish, it is becoming clear that unless we can come up with substitute sources of water, we will simply have less water and a lower standard of living.

Experience shows that nuclear reactors can be used to heat seawater in a process known as "reverse osmosis" to produce large amounts of potable water. The process is already in use in a number of places around the world, from India to Japan and Russia. Eight nuclear reactors coupled to desalination plants are operating in Japan alone.

Seawater desalination raises absolutely no technical problems. The technologies have been used for many years. But most of the world's 12,500 desalination plants use fossil fuels to provide the large amounts of energy needed to desalinate seawater, and that poses economic problems due to the rising cost of oil and natural gas and environmental problems from greenhouse-gas emissions. Nuclear power, on the other hand, is now economically competitive with fossil fuels and produces no greenhouse gases. It is a viable alternative for desalination.

Nuclear reactors could serve a dual purpose, providing both power and fresh water, as they do in nuclear submarines. If anchored a few miles offshore, nuclear desalination plants could be a source of large amounts of potable water transported by pipelines hundreds of miles inland to serve the needs of communities and industries.

A study completed by Argonne National Laboratory determined that dual-purpose reactors called cogeneration plants "could offer a major portion" of the additional water and electricity that municipalities and industry will need for maintaining sustainable development and growth in the years ahead. The study determined that nuclear power would be less costly as a heat source for water desalination than fossil-fuel plants using oil or natural gas. But it said that costs could vary according to the type of reactor used and its specific location, among other factors, requiring further economic analysis.

The next big step needs to be taken by the Department of Energy. It should propose construction of a demonstration reactor for desalination.

Production of large amounts of fresh water would alleviate water shortages in the decades ahead with attendant benefits to homeowners and businesses as well as the environment. Now is the time for the Department of Energy, in concert with Georgia and other states, to determine how best to proceed with nuclear desalination.
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Old 12-31-07, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
I really like this!




Nuclear reactors could serve a dual purpose, providing both power and fresh water, as they do in nuclear submarines. If anchored a few miles offshore, nuclear desalination plants could be a source of large amounts of potable water transported by pipelines hundreds of miles inland to serve the needs of communities and industries.
Yeah that is until it gets wiped out by a hyper-hurricane and then becomes a nuclear-hyper-hurricane.
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Old 01-01-08, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Lateralus
Yeah that is until it gets wiped out by a hyper-hurricane and then becomes a nuclear-hyper-hurricane.

How is a hurricane going to get through many thick layers of steel and concrete?

When hurricanes happen and all the other sources of electricity get knocked out, it's the nuclear power plants that stay operating.
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