SR2.2bn reservoir to solve Jeddah's water woes

Updated 18 August 2013

SR2.2bn reservoir to solve Jeddah's water woes

The National Water Company announced on Sunday that it was building a strategic water reservoir in Jeddah at a cost of SR2.2 billion with a capacity of 6 million cubic meters to meet requirements of the city’s growing population.
The water storage facility is being built in Briman. The project’s first phase, which is designed to supply 1.5 million cubic meters, will be ready by the second quarter of next year.
“Once the remaining three phases are completed, it will have a total capacity of six million cubic meters,” the NWC said.
“This strategic project will not only meet the water requirements of Jeddah, which has a population of nearly four million including expats, but also the seasonal needs, especially during Haj and Umrah,” said Badr Almotawa, a Saudi journalist and expert on water projects.
Almotawa said Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest producer of desalinated water and possesses advanced desalination technology. King Abdullah University of Science and Technology focuses on desalination technology as well as agriculture in desert land, he said. The Kingdom’s total desalinated water output has crossed five million cubic meters.
The NWC said it supplied 1.1 million cubic meters of water daily to Jeddah during Ramadan. “As a result of an advanced planning, we supplied water to Jeddah districts throughout Ramadan and Eid Al-Fitr holidays without any disruption,” it added.
The company’s toll-free No. 8004411110 has been receiving 10,644 calls on average daily for water trucks and to inform about water leaks and lack of supply. The Jeddah supply center deals with more than 2,000 water trucks daily, it pointed out.
The NWC has saved 314 million cubic meters of precious water valued at SR1.8 billion by preventing leakages in Riyadh, Jeddah, Makkah and Taif since 2009.
In Riyadh alone, the company saved 210 million cubic meters of water while in Jeddah and Makkah it reached 46 million and 50 million respectively. The company has repaired more than 256,000 pipeline leakage cases in the four cities since 2009, including 167,000 in Riyadh, 64,000 in Jeddah and 20,000 in Makkah.


Startup of the Week: A Saudi Eco-friendly food waste startup brings value-added benefits

KAUST has been highly supportive of Carbon CPU, both technically and financially. (Supplied)
Updated 21 January 2020

Startup of the Week: A Saudi Eco-friendly food waste startup brings value-added benefits

  • Aldrees: “Over 90 percent of food waste in Saudi Arabia is dumped into landfills”
  • Carbon CPU’s technology uses a specially developed, eco-friendly reactor to help convert food waste into fatty acids

Carbon CPU is a biotechnology startup specializing in turning food waste into fatty acids for use as livestock nutrients.

Launched through the post-graduate startup accelerator program (TAQADAM) of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), the venture was co-founded by Bin Bian, Jiajie Xu, Yara Aldrees, Sara Al-Eid and Prof. Pascal Saikaly.

The idea behind the enterprise began to take shape in 2018. Al-Eid said: “Our aim was to recycle food waste into value-added products in a manner that matched the Saudi Vision 2030 strategy.”

Similar to most countries, Saudi Arabia has a food waste problem, but Carbon CPU thought of utilizing it in a way that caused less harm to the environment and also benefitted the animal feed industry.

“Over 90 percent of food waste in Saudi Arabia is dumped into landfills,” said Aldrees. “This produces a lot of gas, including methane, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide and cycloaromatics, and contributes to global warming and air pollution.”

Water and soil were also being contaminated through leachate production, she added. “We’re trying to solve those issues, too.”

 

The team found that animal farms often struggled to provide enough feed nutrients for livestock such as cows and sheep. Al-Eid said there was a huge shortage of fatty acids, which are used as livestock nutrients and were in high demand from farmers.

“We’re trying to help animals live longer and be more nutritious,” she added.

Carbon CPU’s technology uses a specially developed, eco-friendly reactor to help convert food waste into fatty acids.

“We produce fatty acids from the food waste, extracting them through a liquid-liquid extraction system. The fatty acid oils are then used to help animal feed, as well as the feed and chemical industries,” said Xu.

KAUST has been highly supportive of Carbon CPU, both technically and financially, added Bian. “KAUST, especially the Environmental Biotechnology Lab led by Prof Pascal Saikaly, provided us with the facilities to set up our reactors. The KAUST Innovation and Economic Development department and the Entrepreneurship Center also gave us a lot of guidance on how to push our technology into the market.”

The startup initially faced many challenges that KAUST helped to resolve. As individuals coming from backgrounds mainly in engineering and science, the team lacked the know-how in business that its project needed.

“KAUST made up for our lack of business thinking through training on how to solve business issues and create business modules and find the right customers for our product,” said Bian.