Bonaire aan het water

bron: Financieele Dagblad
datum: 12 augustus 2009

celine bags canada goose buy it out site Duurzaam ondernemer Ruud Koornstra ziet handel in zuiver water.

Mijn zomervakantie breng ik door in een van de zonnigste gemeenten van Nederland: Bonaire, een heerlijk eiland in het Caraïbische gebied, waar vriendelijke mensen met zorg omgaan met de natuur. Plaatselijke en Nederlandse ngo’s hebben samen met de Bonairianen de laatste jaren gewerkt aan de ontwikkeling van dit mooie ‘groene’ eiland. Misschien wel het toekomstige schoolvoorbeeld van duurzaamheid.

De komst, vorige week, van een enorm vrachtschip in de haven van Kralendijk luidt op het gebied van de energievoorziening een nieuw tijdperk in. Ik was er persoonlijk getuige van hoe tien windturbines in onderdelen werden gelost. Als alles meezit zullen de molens nog dit jaar in gebruik worden genomen en samen met een splinternieuwe biodieselcentrale het leeuwendeel van het eiland van stroom voorzien.

300 liter water voor de productie van één ei
Behalve energie is ook in Bonaire schoon drinkwater een dure en energieverslindende aangelegenheid. De mondiaal dreigende waterschaarste is niet het gevolg van een overmatig huis-, tuin- en keukengebruik. Die hoeveelheid valt in het niet bij de indirecte waterconsumptie die nodig is om ons te voeden en te kleden. Er is 300 liter water nodig voor de productie van één ei, een halve kilogram aardappelen of twee koppen koffie. Een biefstuk van 300 gram en een katoenen T-shirt kosten elk 5000 liter water. Bijna 75% van de wereldwijde waterconsumptie komt voor rekening van de landbouw.
Ontzilting, het omzetten van zeewater in zoet water, wordt in steeds meer landen naar voren geschoven als het antwoord op het dreigende watertekort. Zout water is er genoeg. Bonaire heeft er veel ervaring mee, wat heeft geresulteerd in een perfecte drinkwatervoorziening met het lekkerste water. Eén nadeel: ontzilten is duur en kost veel energie. Als de wereld bij de toekomstige watertekorten een beroep doet op de oceanen, hebben we minstens 30.000 terawattuur extra energie nodig, ofwel een verdubbeling van de huidige wereldwijde stroomproductie.

Toch zoeken steeds meer overheden de oplossing in het ontzouten van zeewater. Het resultaat is een groei van het aantal ontziltingsinstallaties, niet toevallig in de landen waar de grondwatervoorraad snel slinkt: Australië, Spanje, de VS, Israël, India, China en zelfs Engeland. Dankzij technologische verbeteringen, waarbij zeewater niet wordt gekookt maar onder hoge druk door een filter wordt geduwd, kost het ontzouten van zeewater nu vier keer minder energie dan begin jaren tachtig. Maar dat is nog steeds veel te veel.

Nieuwe ontziltingsmethoden graag
Daarom mijn oproep aan onze universiteiten en ondernemers om gezamenlijk vol in te zetten op nieuwe ontziltingsmethoden Het vooruitzicht om de nieuwe installaties of methode uiteindelijk op Bonaire ‘in het echt’ te kunnen demonstreren, geeft natuurlijk een grote extra stimulans. Want het is hier werkelijk fantastisch!

Ruud Koornstra is duurzaam ondernemer bij Tendris. ruud@fd.nl

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