Desalination in Israel

  • Erica Spiritos
  • Clive Lipchin
Part of the Global Issues in Water Policy book series (GLOB, volume 4)


Desalination was first developed in Israel in 1965, when Mekorot, Israel’s national water utility, established the first seawater desalination facility using vaporization technology in an effort to address the chronic thirst of the city of Eilat, located at the extreme southern tip of Israel on the Red Sea. A highly energy-intensive process, Mekorot looked for an alternative, energy-saving process, which it found in the reverse osmosis (RO) technology developed in the United States. In the early 1970s after the energy crisis of the Yom Kippur War, Mekorot began installing small-scale brackish water RO-desalination plants and, within the decade, established 15 desalination plants that supplied water to the Arava valley residents. Increasing demand and decreasing supply of freshwater in the coming years encouraged Mekorot to develop seawater desalination as an additional source, and the first plant (which desalinated a mixture of seawater and the reject brine from desalinated brackish water) commenced operation in 1997 in Eilat In this chapter we deal with different issues concerning desalination of seawater in Israel.


External Cost Desalination Plant Desalinate Water Reverse Osmosis Membrane Forward Osmosis 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Transboundary Water ManagementArava Institute for Environmental StudiesKturaIsrael

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