Overcoming the Drought with Desal

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As the drought continues, desalination is making a comeback in our state. At least 16 areas on the California coast are either building or considering desalination plants. A big new plant in Carlsbad, just north of San Diego, will be coming online this fall. The plant cost a billion dollars to build and will provide some 50 million gallons of water a day, or about 7 percent of the water used by the residents of San Diego County. Decades ago, Santa Barbara built a desal plant that opened in 1992 only to mothball it six weeks later, because rain returned to the area. Now the city is planning to bring the plant back online. Is desal the solution to California’s drought?