Water and energy are the issues of this millennium. This conference on desalination for the environment will be devoted to advances towards providing fresh water for all, at affordable cost and at economical energy requirements. With limited and depleting natural sources, desalination can supplement some of the critically lacking amounts of water needed for sustainable development. Its place in the water cycle will be discussed. The conference will overview the most recent developments in desalination technology, its cost and extent of application, including socio-economic and environmental issues. It will bring together research scientists, decision makers, managers, design engineers and operators from water companies, industries, government departments, consulting firms, research institutes and universities. The place of industry, research and government decision making in this booming market will be addressed. Why and how desalination should be integrated into the national or regional water management plans, ensuring socio- economic and environmental benefits, will be the focal point of the conference.