How Water Affects Renewable Energy
"Here is an inconvenient truth about renewable energy: It can sometimes demand a huge amount of water. Many of the proposed solutions to the nation's energy problems, from certain types of solar farms to biofuel refineries to cleaner coal plants, could consume billions of gallons of water every year.
'When push comes to shove, water could become the real throttle on renewable energy,' said Michael E. Webber, an assistant professor at the University of Texas in Austin who studies the relationship between energy and water."
Some renewable energy technologies are more water-efficient than others, but those tend to be more expensive. Water shortages may give those technologies a competitive advantage.