French multinational utility company ENGIE, Nesma Company Limited, and Ajlan & Bros holding group have started the construction works of the Jubail 3B Independent Water Project (IWP) plant located 65km north of Dammam airport in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Commissioned by the Saudi Water Partnership Company (SWPC), the Jubail 3B plant will produce 570,000 m3/day of potable water using reverse osmosis technology.
The plant will supply water to Riyadh and Qassim regions once commercially operational in 2024, under the terms of a 25-year Water Purchase Agreement. The consortium, led by ENGIE, was awarded the Jubail 3B project in June 2021 after submitting a bid with a tariff of $0.42 (SAR 1.591) per cubic meter of potable water to SWPC.
Developed under a public-private partnership structure (PPP), the plant will be financed by the consortium and operated and maintained by ENGIE.
Mr. Khaled Z AlQureshi, CEO of SWPC said that, “The Jubail 3B IWP plant will not only use reverse osmosis, a more energy-efficient process than traditional thermal desalination technologies but will also use renewable solar energy in place of traditional fossil fuels, helping to reduce its carbon footprint. Moreover, the plant will critically support the creation of local job opportunities.”
“The start of construction on the Jubail 3B IWP plant is yet another ENGIE Saudi Arabia milestone that works to support the government’s transition to low carbon, energy-efficient solutions in line with Vision 2030. For 30-years, we have been at the forefront of developing independent power and water projects across the Gulf. This latest innovative desalination solution is further proof of our commitment to supporting regional governments and businesses in delivering sustainable utility solutions against a backdrop of rapid economic growth.”
Once complete, the plant will have a 61MWp capacity solar facility, the largest in-house solar capability for a desalination plant in the Kingdom, helping to optimize electricity consumption and reduce grid reliance.
“With rapid demographic and economic growth taking place across the Kingdom, the Jubail 3B IWP plant will be essential to providing a secure and sustainable source of water to local populations. Jubail 3B Operation also aims to achieve 90 percent Saudization, helping to support job opportunities for Saudi nationals and local economic growth,” commented Mr. Philippe Lambert, CEO of Jubail 3B.