DESALINATION – A POTENTIAL SOLUTION TO GROWING WATER SCARCITY: A CASE STUDY OF MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA
Water scarcity is becoming a common phenomenon as almost 20% of the world’s population live in scarcity. The Middle East and North Africa countries (MENA) - the most water-stressed region of the world is continually faced with a challenge of freshwater availability. Characterized by low annual rainfall, there has been a growing need for exploring unconventional water sources - one of which is seawater desalination. Desalination, a process of extracting freshwater from seawater is energy intensive and comes with a few environmental concerns. Adopting the process as a means of solving water scarcity challenge becomes necessary if other unconventional means cannot sufficiently meet the high-water demand. This is largely the case in MENA countries. This project reviews the trend and extent of water scarcity in the region, desalination successes and challenges, as well as emerging technologies and recommendations for a sustainable desalination process within and outside the region.