The Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) said Saudi Arabia plans to build the world’s largest solar-powered water desalination plant in Al-Khafji Governorate on the Arabian Gulf coast that will have the capacity to produce 30,000 cubic meters when completed.
The SWCC Gov. Abdulrahman Al-Ibrahim told a local newspaper that solar energy is one of the most popular renewable energy sources and Saudi Arabia, obviously, has an abundance of it, adding that the SWCC will be supervising the plant operations in collaboration with the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.
He said the membrane technology will be utilized in existing desalination plants in the country as to reduce gas emissions resulted from the burning fuel. “We started the countdown to close down chimneys at all plants,” he said, adding that membrane technology “doesn’t require the presence of boilers on the plant’s chimneys.”
He said the third reverse-osmosis station in Jeddah is based on membrane technology to maintain the environment. It produces 240,000 cubic meters daily.
The projected Um Al-Khair plant on the eastern coast will produce more than 1 million cubic meters of water every day, in addition to its electrical capacity to produce 2,500 megawatts. The station is one of the biggest in the Middle East.
Um Al-Khair project will be connected to the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) to complete the installations of major generators in the plant to produce electricity. “Within the next few months, Riyadh region will be supplied with more than 150,000 cubic meter desalinated water through the plant’s main pipe network.”
The third phase of Yanbu Plant project on the west coast is being completed. “It will produce 2,650 megawatts of electrical energy and 550,000 cubic meter of desalinated water to serve Madinah and its surrounding villages," he said.