Tianjin boosts desalination supply to beat shortage

Tianjin has become the first Chinese city to transport a large amount of desalinated seawater through its current water supply network after the city had to increase its desalinated supply to cope with an acute water shortage over the New Year holiday period.

The city’s daily supply of desalinated seawater was raised by 8,000 m³/d to a total of 30,000 m³/d for about 170,000 residents in Hangu District and Binhai New Area of Tianjin, a spokesman with the area’s government told the Xinhua news agency on 4 January 2011.

The first stage of the city’s seawater desalination project – the country’s largest to date – begun officially supplying Hangu residents in late October 2010, after a four-month trial operation.

Xinhua quotes Guo Qigang, general manager of the Tianjin Beijiang Power Plant, which was in charge of the project, as saying that the plant’s processing capacity will double by the end of 2011.

The second stage of the project is expected to be completed by 2015, taking total desalination capacity to 400,000 m³/d, he said.

Tianjin suffers a severe water shortage. It has launched several projects to divert water from the Yellow and Luanhe rivers into the city.