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For the second year running, the International Desalination Association will support the International Water Summit in Abu Dhabi as the event's knowledge partner
IDA has also organised several sessions that will be presented at the summit, a platform that will promote global collaboration on water sustainability to be held 20-22 January 2014 at ADNEC.
The second edition of IWS aims to open new opportunities for global leaders, scientists, innovators and environmental experts to work together to make recommendations and improvements within the desalination industry, organisers said.
Hosted by Masdar and in partnership with Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA), the IWS is reportedly a leading global consortium raising awareness and solving problems linked to water sustainability in arid regions.
Held on 21-22 January, the desalination sessions will provide insights on enhancement of energy efficiency in the desalination process including discussions on low energy desalination technologies and their strategic selection with special focus on the GCC region and the evaluation system.
Abdullah Al-Alshaikh, president of IDA, said, “In the last 20 years, the evolution of desalination technologies has significantly reduced energy consumption and the cost of water. Technological innovation — from growth in new technologies to development of renewable sources of energy to power desalination — is the key factor in optimizing water and energy costs worldwide. Increasing energy efficiency remains a goal for the industry as we chart the course to sustainable desalination.”
Leon Awerbuch, director of IDA, added that some countries in the Gulf relied on desalination to produce 90 per cent or more of their drinking water, and overall this region represented nearly half of the world’s desalinated water capacity.
Miguel Angel Sanz, second vice-president of IDA, will speak on the subject of energy conservation through reverse osmosis desalination. He will highlight the importance of considering both water and energy in tandem rather than in isolation — a key platform of IWS and the primary reason for its co-location with the World Future Energy Summit (WFES) for the past two years.
Corrado Sommariva, ex-president of IDA, will speak on renewable energy desalination at the Summit. He is a technical adviser for the new desalination plant being constructed in Fujairah. The plant is likely to produce 3.7KW hours per cubic metre as compared to the industry standard of four to six kilowatt hours per cubic metre.
Desalination and the GCC
According to IDA, the GCC region is the world’s largest producer of desalinated water. Saudi Arabia is the largest country producer, producing 9.2mn cubic meters per day. The UAE is the second largest producer with a daily production rate of 8.4mn cubic metres.
Global Water Intelligence (GWI) or the DesalData estimates that the total value of desalination contracts awarded in the GCC in 2013 was approximately US$2.7bn, relating to 1.9mn cubic metres per day of additional capacity.
Over the next five years a further US$11.7bn is expected to be spent on desalination plants in the region, adding a total of 8.4mn cubic metres per day of new capacity, the data added.