Evaporation ponds beside desalination plants can cool the planet and reduce environmental harm
Jeff Haley
May 12, 2023

When making fresh water from ocean water, desalination plants discharge water with a high concentration of salt (brine). If the brine is placed back into the sea, it can form a salt crust on beaches as shown in the photo and cause environmental damage because the level of salt is too high for plants and animals.

Instead of returning the salty brine discharge to the sea, it can be directed to evaporation ponds which will be bright reflective white salt when the water evaporates. This will increase reflection of solar energy to space, cooling the planet, and reducing environmental harm at the same time.  

There are approximately 16,000 operational desalination plants, located across 177 countries, mostly in places with few clouds with high potential for reflectivity gains. Where reflectivity gains are high, the plant should construct a large number of ponds and discharge into one at a time so that most of them will be bright white with salt most of the time.

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