Some countries around the world suffer from a lack of fresh water. To combat this, they turn to desalination, which is the process of removing salt from seawater. Israel is one country that relies heavily on this process, and will now begin pumping desalinated water into the Sea of Galilee.
While the Sea of Galilee might not sound like a salty mass, it’s actually a freshwater lake. And like many lakes and rivers around the world, it is beginning to shrink as a result of climate change.
Israel is trying to prevent this with its latest decision.
This marks a significant change for the country, as in the past, the Sea of Galilee actually provided the country with drinking water. However, due to water shortages, the country needed to rely more heavily on desalination.
Now with conditions at their worst, water will not flow into the lake as it once did, but instead, it flows out.
How Effective Is Water Desalination for Israel?
Water desalination is incredibly effective and provides drinking water for all of Israel. Many other middle eastern nations also rely on it, as water is in short supply everywhere in the region. However, there is one problem with the process.
You see, it takes energy to remove the salt from seawater. And as you might expect, for most of these nations, that comes from fossil fuel. Now, with that said, the energy could come from renewable energy and fix the problem entirely.
That may be necessary, as droughts continue to worsen all around the world, desalination is becoming a far more attractive solution. Building up the infrastructure today could help nations make themselves more climate resilient in the future.
Of course, some places are focusing a lot on energy usage. For instance, California actually refused to allow a desalination plant to be built as it faces the longest drought in its history. While it’s important to minimize energy usage, water is essential for life.
It will be interesting to see if they reconsider if the drought continues for another year.
Is It Dangerous to Mix Desalinated Water With Fresh Water?
There are certain risks in adding desalinated seawater into freshwater.
Seawater does actually contain a lot of things that freshwater does not, which means they would be introducing something new to the ecosystem. That’s why Israel has to run several tests to ensure that nothing bad will happen.
Not only did their testing not find anything wrong with this suggestion, but it will also help the lake combat climate change better than ever.
For example, one benefit would be that they would increase the water turnover rate. This will prevent bacteria buildup and also help lower the overall temperature of the lake. Thus, making it more resilient to the overall effects of climate change.
It’s also worth pointing out that they are essentially banking valuable drinking water in one location. If for some reason they could no longer get water from the Mediterranean Sea, they would be able to rely on this for a time.
Robert has been following and writing about environmental stories for years at GreenGeeks. He believes that highlighting environmentally friendly practices can help promote change in every household.