Should Ireland look to desalination to solve its water shortage?

Thames Water’s plant is one renewable but costly model for ‘water-stressed’ regions

Thames Water Desalination Plant can provide 150 million litres of drinking water each day, enough for one million people. Photograph: Ian Waldie/Bloomberg

Thames Water Desalination Plant can provide 150 million litres of drinking water each day, enough for one million people. Photograph: Ian Waldie/Bloomberg

The £250 million Thames Water Desalination Plant was the first of its kind in the UK. It came into operation in 2010 and can provide up to 150 million litres of drinking water each day, which is enough for nearly one million people.

Much of Thames Water’s supply area is classed by the UK Environment Agency as “seriously water-stressed”, with customers in London, Swindon and Oxford particularly at risk of water restrictions during extended periods of dry weather.

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