Crosscutting Research Program

Water Management R&D

Assessing the Energy-Water Nexus, and providing new technologies for efficient energy production

water-image-1.pngWater is a fixed resource with competing demands and increase uncertainty. Furthermore, there is an inextricable link between water and energy, as thermoelectric power generation accounts for over 40% of freshwater withdrawals and over 3% of freshwater consumption in the U.S. Check out NETL’s recently published Water Briefs for a more detailed discussion on water demands and consumption throughout the contingent US.

The Water Management program addresses these competing water needs and challenges, through a series of dynamic and complex models and analysis that are essential in informing and deciding priority technology R&D initiatives.

The program encompasses the need to minimize any potential impacts of power plant operations on water quality and availability. Analyzing and exploring plant efficiency opportunities can reduce the amount of water required for fossil energy operations.

New water treatment technologies that economically derive clean water from alternative sources will allow greater recycling of water within energy extraction and conversion as well as carbon storage processes. This helps reduce the amount of total water demand within fossil energy generation.

The program leads a critical, national effort directed at removing barriers to sustainable, efficient, water and energy use; developing technology solutions; and enhancing the understanding of the intimate relationship between energy and water resources.

Water Management and R&D Explained


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