ABU DHABI, 4th February, 2014 (WAM) -- TAQA, the international energy and water company based in Abu Dhabi, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Federal Electricity and Water Authority, FEWA, to develop a standalone seawater desalination plant in Al Zawra in the Emirate of Ajman.The agreement was signed in Abu Dhabi by Mohammed Mohammed Saleh, Director General of FEWA, and Carl Sheldon, CEO of Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC (TAQA). in the presence of Suhail bin Mohammed Faraj Faris Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Chairman of Federal Electricity and Water Authority and Hamad Al-Hurr Al-Suwaidi, Chairman of TAQA. Al Zawra independent water project (IWP) will have a capacity of 30 million imperial gallons per day (MIGD), enough to supply 250,000 people in the Northern Emirates with clean drinking water. Mr. Al Mazrouei said, "The Al Zawra project demonstrates the U.A.E.?s determination to develop and apply new technologies that will protect the security of water supply while actively working towards greater energy efficiency." Mr. Al-Suwaidi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of TAQA, said, "At a time of strong demographic and economic growth across the U.A.E., and particularly in the Northern Emirates, this project will ensure that sufficient water infrastructure is in place to meet increasing demand." Mohammed Mohammed Saleh, Director-General of FEWA, commented, "The Northern Emirates are developing at an increasing pace and the demand for water will continue to grow. FEWA has allocated significant funds for developing water and electricity projects there, over the coming three years. Al Zawra is a crucial element in that strategy." The Ajman facility will use the reverse osmosis process, where salt and impurities are removed from the water by pushing it through a semi-permeable membrane. Unlike most of the U.A.E.?s existing desalination capacity, which is based on thermal technologies and tied to power plants, reverse osmosis plants run on electricity. This means they can be run more efficiently and located close to consumption areas, enhancing the security of water supply. According to the development plan, the project would be owned by FEWA and TAQA, underpinned by a long-term water purchase agreement with FEWA and funded with project finance. Construction is expected to start in early 2015 and the plant would begin commercial operations in 2017.
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