Texas will need desalination says land commissioner

The Texas Land Commissioner, Jerry Patterson, said on 29 August 2013 at the Texas Groundwater Summit in San Marcos that the state would need more alternatives such as desalination to provide a solution for its thirsty growing population.

The General Lands Office is still evaluating possible sites around Texas for future desalination operations, including a US$ 2 million study on the Texas coast .

Patterson said that the more efficient and cost-effective desalination technology becomes, the greater the savings will be for future Texans facing a dwindling fresh water supply.

“We can’t rely on the Edwards Aquifer for all our future groundwater needs,” Patterson said. “It takes three decades to get a new lake permitted and filled, and pipelines are costly.”

Texas currently has 17 desalination facilities. The largest is the Kay Bailey Hutchison Plant in El Paso with a capacity of 27.5 MGD (104,000 m³/d).