Authored By: Sarah
15 Jul 2024

 Desalination Market Size to grow by USD 9077.1 million between 2024-2028

According to a research report “ Desalination Market” by Technology (Membrane, Thermal) Application (Municipal, Industrial, Others) Geography (Middle East and Africa, APAC, North America, Europe, South America)- Global Forecast to 2028 published by Technavio, the market size is estimated to grow by USD 9077.1 million, at a CAGR of almost 8.43% during the forecast period. The global desalination market is experiencing significant growth due to the escalating global population and the resulting demand for safe, consumable water. By 2050, the World Bank Group projects that the global population will reach 9.73 billion, with only approximately half of that number having access to potable water as of the first half of 2022. With freshwater reserves unevenly distributed and a large percentage of naturally available water being non-potable due to contaminants such as industrial waste, pollutants, and pathogens, the demand for desalination technology is poised to increase substantially over the forecast period.

Browse market data tables, figures, and in-depth TOC on “Desalination Market” by Technology (Membrane, Thermal) Application (Municipal, Industrial, Others) Geography (Middle East and Africa, APAC, North America, Europe, South America) Global Forecast to 2028. Download Free Sample


By Technology, the Membrane segment is projected to dominate the market size in 2024

The desalination market's municipal segment is projected to experience significant growth due to the escalating demand for desalination technologies to address the scarcity of fresh, potable water for the expanding global population. Desalination processes primarily deal with seawater, producing two distinct streams: treated freshwater, which contains reduced salt and mineral content, and concentrate or brine, with higher salt and mineral concentrations than the feed water. Given the resilience of large-scale desalination treatment facilities to climate change, wastewater emerges as a promising alternative source of drinking water, further bolstering market expansion.

By Application, Municipal  segment is expected to hold the largest market size for the year 2024

The membrane technology segment dominates the global desalination market, accounting for the largest share, driven by its effectiveness in addressing water scarcity issues in regions with limited energy resources. Membrane technology, which includes Reverse Osmosis (RO), Electrodialysis (ED), Electrodialysis Reversal (EDR), Nanofiltration, and others, involves the passage of water through a semi-permeable membrane under high pressure. Recent advancements in energy recovery systems and membrane materials have significantly enhanced the performance of membrane desalination processes, reducing energy consumption and improving overall efficiency. Membrane technology's growing popularity is a result of its ability to provide large-scale, reliable, and sustainable water supply solutions.

Middle East and Africa is forecasted to hold the largest market size by region in 2024

The desalination market represents a significant business opportunity, driven by the increasing global water scarcity and the growing demand for reliable water sources. Desalination technologies, such as reverse osmosis and multi-stage flash distillation, offer viable solutions to address water shortages. Key players in this industry include Idesa, Abengoa, and Suez, who are investing heavily in research and development to improve efficiency and reduce costs. The market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.5% from 2021 to 2026, reaching a value of USD32.2 billion by 2026.

The Desalination Market growth and forecasting report also includes detailed analyses of the competitive landscape of the market growth and forecasting and information about 20 market companies, including:

  • Acciona SA
  • Asahi Kasei Corp.
  • Bechtel Corp.
  • Biwater Holdings Ltd.
  • Consolidated Water Co. Ltd.
  • Doosan Corp.
  • DuPont de Nemours Inc.
  • Ferrovial SA
  • Hyflux Ltd.
  • IDE Water Technologies
  • Kurita Water Industries Ltd
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.
  • Osmoflo
  • Poseidon Water LLC
  • ProMinent GmbH
  • Toyobo Co. Ltd.
  • Veolia Environnement SA
  • Webuild

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Research Analysis Overview

The desalination market has gained significant attention due to the increasing water scarcity and the need for freshwater sources. Desalination is the process of removing minerals and excess salts from seawater, brackish water, or surface water to produce potable water. This energy-intensive process involves various techniques such as membrane processes, including reverse osmosis and nanofiltration, and thermal processes, like multi-stage flash distillation and multi-effect distillation. Byproduct generation is a major concern in desalination, with excess energy usage leading to high operational costs. Research is ongoing to improve desalination efficiency and reduce energy consumption. For instance, the use of renewable energy sources like solar and wind power is being explored to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels. The desalination process involves the application of pressure and electric potential to overcome osmotic pressures and concentration gradients. Feedwater sources include seawater, brackish water, and even groundwater. The resulting potable water is free of minerals and excess salts, making it ideal for agricultural purposes and drinking water. Assumptions of industrialization and rapid urbanization have led to increased water consumption patterns, further exacerbating water scarcity. Desalination offers a viable solution to meet the growing demand for freshwater while minimizing the assumptions of consuming freshwater sources unsustainably. However, the high energy usage and cost remain challenges that need to be addressed for the desalination market to reach its full potential.

Market Research Overview

The desalination market is witnessing significant growth due to increasing water shortages and the need for water security in urban areas, particularly in regions with limited freshwater resources. Companies like Engie and EWEC are leading the way with large-scale desalination projects, such as the Shuweihat plant in the UAE, which uses reverse osmosis (RO) membrane technology to convert seawater into potable water. However, desalination faces challenges, including membrane fouling, strict regulations, and environmental issues. Natural resources, such as surface water, groundwater, brackish water, and seawater, serve as feedwater sources for desalination procedures. Membrane fouling, caused by the buildup of minerals, excess salts, and chemicals on membranes, can reduce efficiency and increase post-treatment costs. Energy usage and efficiency are also critical concerns, as desalination is often an energy-intensive process. Environmental organizations, such as the Wildlife Federation, raise concerns about the impact of desalination on marine ecosystems and water pollution. Climate change and increasing population further exacerbate water demand and the need for desalination. Despite these challenges, advancements in membrane technology, energy recovery devices, and pressure vessels offer potential solutions. Renewable technologies, such as solar and wind power, can also be integrated into desalination processes to reduce energy usage and improve efficiency. The desalination market is segmented into industrial and municipal sectors, with interconnection and intake screens playing crucial roles in the desalination process. Capital costs, energy efficiencies, lifespan, and flux are key factors influencing the desalination market. Scaling, fouling, and membrane processes are ongoing areas of research to address challenges and improve desalination procedures. Ultimately, the desalination market must balance water demand, economic factors, and environmental concerns to ensure sustainable water resources for future generations.


Technavio Research
Jesse Maida
Media & Marketing Executive
US: +1 844 364 1100
UK: +44 203 893 3200

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