With water shortages becoming more likely in the US and worldwide, desalination technology is getting a closer look. The National Academies' National Research Council is scheduled to release a report on desalination on Jan. 31, 2008. The report, with a working title of "Desalination: A National Perspective and Research Strategy," will cover topics such as regulations, the state of the science, research needs, economics, financing, and public acceptance.
Information on the NRC committee and its work is here.  Media contact: Jennifer Walsh, 202-334-2138.
There is no explicit mention in the "Project Scope" of the environmental impacts of desalination, although a few of the members on the Committee may have raised such issues. For information on these and other related angles, see the TipSheet of March 16, 2005.