December 2019 (LK: this is a fascinating article on water desal using solar power to begin to reforest an area on the Big Island) by Author Yishan Wong in Medium: In considering large-scale strategies to fix climate change, it turns out that the lowest-risk, lowest-cost, and most politically feasible strategy is the massive global reforestation of 3 billion acres.
To concretely prove out key technologies and costs, we have recently completed construction of the world’s largest fully off-grid 100% solar-powered desalination facility. There are other larger desalination plants, but they are all grid-tied and/or reliant at least partially on fossil fuels. In contrast, we are completely independent and 100% powered by solar energy.
Our facility comprises a half -acre of solar panels rated at roughly 128 kW total generating power and 300 kWh of battery storage. It is designed to produce 128,000 liters/day (34,000 gallons/day, or 128 m3/day) of freshwater, more than enough to irrigate the entire property. The facility is off the grid, so we have created our own electrical and water utility.
Recent cost improvements in solar mean that green desalination is now feasible. The significance of this cannot be understated, because desalination is uniquely suited to using solar power, as it avoids the solar intermittency issue.
The area of North Kohala where our project is located used to be covered with an ancient sandalwood forest, from the mountains to the shore. Hundreds of years ago, the entire forest was cut down to supply the profitable sandalwood trade and the region never recovered. It remains a desert to this day.
For the rest of this article see it here…