Ducey wants Arizona to invest US$1bn in desalination

Gov. Doug Ducey recommended spending $1 billion from the state’s general fund over three years to “protect Arizona’s water future for the next 100 years,” according to a statement released Monday. The governor stated in his final State of the State address that water infrastructure, including desalination, will be prioritized in the budget he submits to lawmakers.

“Instead of just talking about desalination, the technology that made Israel the world’s water superpower,” he said, “how about we pave the way to make it actually happen?”

Seawater desalination on the Sea of Cortez would pump treated water to Morelos Dam near Yuma for distribution in Mexico, which has long been suggested as a way to deliver some of Mexico’s portion of the Colorado River without drawing down Lake Mead. The U.S. parties paying into the program would then take some of Mexico’s river water as compensation.

While desalination was the only new water effort mentioned in Ducey’s address, his office afterwards sent an email stating that the budget would “promote new technologies, encourage reuse, and efficiency upgrades.”

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