Abu Dhabi sets stage for 3rd MENA Desalination Projects Forum

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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The third MENA Desalination Projects Forum will convene in Abu Dhabi to examine the depth of water scarcity and discuss the opportunities of desalination projects, in line with the climate change target and reduction in emissions by 2030 and 2050.

The largest government-endorsed regional desalination conference, which is set to be held on 15th and 16th of March 2022, will bring together over 400 regional and global stakeholders from the government, consulting, contracting and technology sectors to discuss the way forward for the region’s desalination industry, key upcoming mega projects, and national sustainability visions driving the region’s 2030 water agendas.

The two-day event will address the demand gap for clean or desalinated water and forge partnerships to ensure sustainable solutions for water security. The forum will discuss opportunities for investment and how to make the most out of the increasing number of desalination developments to keep pace with growing demand. 

Corrado Sommariva
Corrado Sommariva
Sustainable Water & Power Consultants

“The conference will be able to focus on the water contribution towards net-zero by 2050 and how the water sector not only can accomplish but even surpass the target. Technology has generally been developing at an unprecedented pace in the past decade. This conference will indicate how the industry benefited from this development and what are the key innovations in desalination which is key to achieve a sustainable water supply.”

According to a World Bank report, the annual costs being witnessed in the demand gap for clean water in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region could go as high as $400 billion or as much as a four-fold increase on the current $104 billion per year. 

The global desalination market is projected to grow from $17.7 billion in 2020 to $32.1 billion by 2027, data from Renub Research shows. Around 48 percent of the world’s water desalination projects are taking place in the MENA region, which would push investments there to $4.3 billion by 2022.

The demand for clean water in MENA will grow due to increasing populations, expected economic growth and the likely impacts of climate change, the World Bank added.

Sustainability will be high on the conference’s agenda. MENA nations are projected to add 20 gigawatts of solar capacity and 5 gigawatts to 6 gigawatts of wind energy by 2025, providing an opportunity to address water security challenges.

“The decoupling of power and water production across the region has resulted in a growing trend to adopt captive solar photovoltaic plants, which is expected to drive water production costs down further,” Mr. Sommariva said.

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