(373b) Analysis of Carbon and Water Policies in the Optimal Design of Water Distribution Networks Involving Power-Desalination Plants
As the energy and water demands increase, the emissions due to power generation along with immoderate water extractions rise. Several strategies have been proposed to tackle these problems. The use of solar energy and biofuels in dual-purpose power plants represents an alternative to reduce the environmental impact and produce electricity and water. Mainly for deserts, solar energy facilities can be considered because of the availability of large areas and high solar radiation. Accounting for this, our approach consists of developing an optimization model for macroscopic water distribution networks integrated with power-desalination plants under carbon and water policies analysis. The proposed model involves energy and water demands for domestic, agricultural, and industrial users. Energy can be provided through fossil fuels, biofuels, and solar energy. In addition to the water generated in dual-purpose power plants, water demands can be satisfied by artificial storage tanks and water from natural sources (aquifers and dams). The following aspects are considered in the integrated system: electricity and water generation in existing and new dual-purpose power plants, availability restrictions for fossil fuels and biofuels, existing and new water storage tanks, and variation in the demands. The model formulation includes linear, nonlinear and logical relationships to consider mass, energy and economic aspects of the macroscopic system. To find the optimal design of the system, the profit is maximized while considering taxes and tax credits applied to carbon emissions and water management. Furthermore, the impact of these economic penalties and compensations on the environmental (generated emissions, extracted water, and recharge of aquifers) and social (generation of jobs) functions is analyzed. Specifically, the taxes and tax credits are applied to the generated and avoided emissions as well as to the water extraction and recharge of aquifers. To show the applicability of the model, a water management problem in the Sonoran Desert is addressed as a case study including the evaluation of several taxes and tax credits previously reported. Results present economic, environmental and social benefits, especially when tax credits are involved. A reduction in emissions and extracted water along with an increase in the recharge of aquifers and the number of jobs can be found through the analysis.