This year WEB experienced problems meeting the increasing demand for potable water. To cope with this phenomenon, drinking water was imported in 1982, 1983 and 1990 from the United States, Venezuela and Dominica.
WEB contracted a company to install a 1,000 m3/day SWRO in 1983 on a Build, Own and Operate (BOO) contract in an effort to minimize import of water. This Plate and Frame SWRO production unit stayed in operation from 1983 to 1985. There were a lot of membrane biofouling problems and this SWRO production unit never operated optimally. After 43 years of excellent results with the MSF technology, the challenging step toward SWRO had been taken in Aruba indicating the beginning of the end of the MSF supremacy era, as is often remarked in the desalination world.
In the meantime, the five MED evaporators (installed in 1958) were demolished in 1983 after being kept in production for 25 years.