CleanTX Analysis on Water: The Thirst for Power

Current technologies for power generation, with some exceptions such as wind turbines and photovoltaic solar cells, rely heavily on the availability of large amounts of water. Primarily this water is needed for cooling thermoelectric plants and supplying fluid pressure and flow for hydroelectric power generation. But in a changing climate, it is not clear whether sufficient volumes of water will continue to be available where needed. In the future the growing demand for water for power production will come into conflict with other uses, particularly municipal supplies. This report examines water consumption and withdrawal in Texas in the light of the interrelated demand for power and water.