All this is a bit strange given that there is literally water everywhere. We’re not running out of the stuff — we have the exact amount of water we’ve always had. But as water usage has changed, the clean drinking water that communities survive on is becoming increasingly scarce.
Though most of the world is covered with water, only 1% of it is suitable for consumption.
Still, seawater is the inevitable solution to the world’s shortages. Though potentially lethal if gulped down, seawater is perfectly potable when the compounds known collectively as “salts” are removed.
The fact is, we’ve got the water. The only question is whether we’re willing to spend the money. Any water shortage can be solved tomorrow with a process known as reverse osmosis desalination, which basically means shooting water at extremely high pressure through a series of filters to remove the salt.
The only problem is that it’s pricey. And unless the plant is built with an ingenious little piece of equipment, the clean water it produces is probably going to be too expensive.
Here’s the kicker: This piece of equipment — called a pressure exchanger — is basically controlled by one company: Energy Recovery, Inc. (NASDAQ:ERII).
Energy Recovery, Inc. (NASDAQ:ERII) manufactures a device that captures the energy from a high-pressure stream of water and recycles it so as to decrease the pump workload — think of it as the second peddler on a tandem bicycle who makes the uphill climbs half as steep.
By capturing that energy, a plant’s overall energy bill can be reduced by up to 60%, according to Energy Recovery’s regulatory filings.
Build a desalination plant without Energy Recovery, Inc. (NASDAQ:ERII)’s patented equipment, and your power bill might be $10 million a year. Install the devices, and the electricity costs could drop to $4 million. For cost-conscious operators like regional water utilities, the decision is a no-brainer.
As I say in my recently released report, I wouldn’t invest more than 10% of your portfolio in these game-changing ideas. But, sometimes, that’s all you need to move the needle on your returns.
Energy Recovery, Inc. (NASDAQ:ERII) definitely has the potential to do major things in the future. And should be on anyone’s radar who is looking for a ‘game-changer’ for their portfolio.
But, like I said, my other predictions for 2014 may be some of my best ideas yet. They all have the potential to lead you to a triple-digit winner. To find out what my 11 predictions for 2014 are, click here.
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