VIDEO (Part 1): Solar power desalination plans in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia's Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) discusses plans to increase solar powered desalination in Saudi Arabia...

Nov 29th, 2013

The race is on in the Middle East to install solar powered desalination and prove on a large scale. The UAE and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) are going head to head in a bid to power potable water production in a more efficient, sustainable way.

Next month will see utility company Utico Middle East invite tenders for what is being considered the world’s largest solar-powered seawater desalination plant in Ras Al Khaimah in the UAE. The plan is for a 100,000 m3/day reverse osmosis (RO) plant to be developed, along with 20 MW of solar power.

This is not the first solar powered water initiative in the UAE. In early 2012 the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi (EAD) said it was halfway through testing solar powered plants (see WWi story).

Meanwhile efforts are also underway in Saudi Arabia, with programme between the National Research Institute of Saudi Arabia in King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST).

A 30,000 m3/day desalination plant powered by photovoltaic cells is part of a series of developments planned in the Kingdom.

WWi magazine spoke to the Governor of the Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) to find out more about the plans. As can be seen in the video interview below, SWCC has plans to increase this amount so that up to 300,000 m3/day of water is produced using renewable energy:

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