December 20, 2010
Desalination technologies represent one of the brightest hopes to address the challenge of meeting the world’s growing demand for freshwater. While the capital costs associated with desalination plant construction remain high, a recent report from Pike Research finds that costs are falling steadily for several key technologies, which will make seawater-to-freshwater conversion more affordable for a variety of applications. The cleantech market intelligence firm forecasts that increased construction of desalination plants will generate a cumulative capital investment of $87.8 billion worldwide during the period from 2010 to 2016.
“Desalination market growth is being driven by a combination of dwindling water resources, population growth and urbanization, and lower desalination costs,” says Pike Research president Clint Wheelock. “While we are forecasting a slowdown in the market over the next two years, largely due to the lingering effects of the global financial crisis, the outlook for the longer term remains strong, and we anticipate that desalination capital investment will double within six years.”
Wheelock adds that membranes, which serve as very efficient barriers to salts that are dissolved in seawater and brackish water, are being utilized as a cost-effective means of desalination in a variety of settings. The single most applied membrane technology is reverse osmosis. Thermal processes, including multi-stage flash distillation, multiple effect distillation, and vapor compression, are also being deployed in desalination plants.
Pike Research’s analysis finds that the desalination market brings together a wide variety of industry players including engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) companies, desalination plant suppliers, construction companies, operation and maintenance service providers, financial institutions, consulting engineers, and suppliers of pumps, valves, membranes, pressure vehicles, and chemicals.
Pike Research’s study, “Desalination Technology Markets”, analyzes emerging technologies and market opportunities in the global desalination industry. It explores a variety of market growth drivers including dwindling water resources, population, pollution, and falling desalination system costs. Key industry players are profiled and country-level market forecasts are provided for key global markets through 2016. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the firm’s website.
Pike Research is a market research and consulting firm that provides in-depth analysis of global clean technology markets. The company’s research methodology combines supply-side industry analysis, end-user primary research and demand assessment, and deep examination of technology trends to provide a comprehensive view of the Smart Energy, Clean Transportation, Clean Industry, and Building Efficiency sectors. For more information, visit www.navigantresearch.com or call +1.303.997.4619.