California and the western US are in the grip of what some observers are calling a “mega drought.” Rainfall in the golden state is now at its lowest level in 100 years and things are getting worse. The people of at least small Central California community called East Porterville are now relying on bottled water distributed by authorities because their wells are running dry.
The situation could soon get much worse because most Californians rely upon water piped in from other parts of the state or the Colorado River in Arizona. Those sources might run dry as well. The situation could soon get worse because of climate change.
The entire country and possibly the world could be affected because a large percentage of the fruit, nuts and vegetables eaten in the United States and around the world are grown in California. News reports indicate that many farmers are already cutting production because of water shortages.
Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LENR) could help solve this problem by providing the heat for desalination. Desalination simply means removing the salt from seawater which California has plenty of. The process of desalination is very simple but it requires massive amounts of heat making it cost prohibitive.
A number of experts including Robert Godes of Brillouin have noted that LENR could provide the heat for desalination and make it economical. That would definitely help Californians end the drought and it could prevent food shortages. Currently water usually used for crop production is being diverted to California cities most of which are on the cost.
With Desalination water for cities could be produced on the coast leaving more water for irrigation of crops. Some Californians are already looking into this, a private company called NSC Aqua has proposed a giant plant that would provide water for the city of San Diego and its Mexican neighbor Tijuana. Another desalination plant is under construction at Carlsbad in North San Diego County.
One of the plants in San Diego would use heat from a local power plant to desalinate seawater. That would reduce costs but it could make pollution worse because the plant burns fossil fuels.
LENR would eliminate the pollution from desalination, make the process far cheaper and power the pumps that move the water as well. By making desalination economical, LENR could make water shortages like those California is currently facing a thing of the past.