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Dewa awards $237m SWRO desalination contract

Dewa awards $237m SWRO desalination contract



Dewa awards $237m SWRO desalination contract




Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa)

Estimated Cost:

$237 Million


Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) has awarded a contract worth Dh871 million ($237 million) to a joint venture between Acciona Agua and Belhasa Six Construct (Besix) for the construction of a seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO)-based desalination plant at Jebel Ali.

The plant is being developed as a brownfield seawater desalination plant and associated facilities, with the selected desalination technology being SWRO, two pass reverse osmosis (RO), including pre-treatment facilities.

The 40-million gallons per day (mgpd) plant is expected to be commissioned by May 2020 to meet the reserve margin criterion set for peak water demand for the year 2020 and beyond.

Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, the managing director and chief executive of Dewa, said: "In line with Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050, which aims to reduce Dubai’s carbon footprint to be the smallest in the world by 2050, we work to increase the efficiency of the water production plants through promoting PV panels and other solar technologies."

"To ensure this, we need to connect multi-stage flash distillation, MSF, based plants to a centralised solar energy source such as the MBR Solar Park, so our strategy is to build production plants based on RO, which requires 90 per cent less energy than that of MSF, making it a more sustainable choice for water desalination," he noted.
The project is also aimed at establishing Dubai’s leading position in the region, as an example of an effective and efficient infrastructure for electricity and water networks, to meet current and future requirements for all aspects of development in the emirate.

"Dewa continuously works to enhance the efficiency and reliability of the water network, increase water flow to fulfil increasing demand for water in all parts of Dubai and raise the volume of the emirate’s water reserves and support sustainable development," he added.
Al Tayer said this project is in line with Dewa's decoupling plans for water desalination and power production and water desalination using solar energy.

"The big projects launched by Dewa have contributed to reducing the production cost of electricity through solar energy on a global level and we continue to decouple electricity production from water desalination to obtain 100 percent desalinated water using a mix of clean energy and waste heat by 2030,"  he noted.

Al Tayer said this will allow Dubai to exceed global targets for using clean energy to desalinate water.

"RO will help expand our production capacity to 305 million gallons of desalinated water per day by 2030. Eventually, reverse osmosis will produce 41 per cent compared to its current share of 5 per cent, so we will be able to produce 750 million gallons of desalinated water per day by 2030, compared to our current capacity of 470 million gallons per day," he noted.

"Also, increasing the operational efficiency of the decoupling process will save around Dh13 billion and reduce 43 tonnes of carbon emissions by 2030.