Water Supply in Chennai: Desalination and Missed Opportunities

Economic and Political Weekly, 47(23): 26-28, 2012

10 Pages Posted: 14 May 2012 Last revised: 5 Jun 2012

See all articles by Sridhar Vedachalam

Sridhar Vedachalam

Environmental Policy Innovation Center

Date Written: May 14, 2012

Abstract

Desalination may provide a reliable supply of water to a city with chronic water shortage, but it is hardly the best option for more than one reason. Alternatives such as reuse of treated waste water can address the twin problems of water supply and waste discharge. Moreover, desalination only gets at the supply side of the issue, providing a false notion of water security. Ultimately, in a city that does not collect enough revenue to offset its costs, the real question is whether the gains in utility will be retained in the long-term.

Keywords: Chennai, desalination, water supply, wastewater reuse

JEL Classification: O21, O33, Q21, Q25, R11

Suggested Citation

Vedachalam, Sridhar, Water Supply in Chennai: Desalination and Missed Opportunities (May 14, 2012). Economic and Political Weekly, 47(23): 26-28, 2012, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2057301 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2057301

Sridhar Vedachalam (Contact Author)

Environmental Policy Innovation Center

777 6th St NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

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