Saudi Arabia mourns first doctor to die after contracting coronavirus

Naeem Chaudhry died after contracting the coronavirus. (Supplied)
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Updated 06 June 2020

Saudi Arabia mourns first doctor to die after contracting coronavirus

  • Pakistani surgeon Naeem Chaudhry died in Makkah, where he worked at Hira General Hospital
  • He contracted the virus in the course of his work helping patients, not from anyone outside the hospital

MAKKAH: Colleagues have paid tribute to the first two doctors to lose their lives in Saudi Arabia as a result of the coronavirus disease, COVID-19.
Pakistani surgeon Naeem Chaudhry died in Makkah, where he worked in the General Surgery Department at Hira General Hospital. Dr. Muhammad Al-Faki, from Sudan, was a hematology oncology consultant at King Saud University Medical City in Riyadh.
Al-Faki’s colleagues and students set up a hashtag on Twitter in his honor to share cherished memories of him.
“He always cared for his patients and followed up with them personally and was in constant contact with (them),” said his colleague Asaad Assiri, a professor and pediatric consultant at KSUMC. “The smile never left his face. He always came early to work and left the hospital late at night.”
Dr. Hasan Batis Alnomani, a pediatric hematologist at KSUMC, said Al-Faki once told him: “Hasan, it has been more than 40 years (and) I did not take sick leave even for a day. I was offered many services and things from patients and their families; I told them thank you.”
Twitter user @satujjar shared a photo, taken four years ago, of his son with Al-Faki during the youngster’s first visit to the hospital’s hematology clinic. He recalled Al-Faki’s “kindness, beautiful spirit, lasting smile, love for children….I can’t imagine the clinic without him.”
Dr. Wael Hamzah Mutair, director general of Makkah Health Affairs, said the health care family is saddened by Chaudhry’s death, and that the city has lost one of its most skilled and prominent general surgeons.
He said Chaudhry was one of the frontline workers who have played such an important role in the fight against COVID-19 in the Kingdom, and confirmed that he contracted the virus during the course of his work, not from anyone outside the hospital. His only existing health problem was high blood pressure, Mutair added.
Makkah Health Affairs has seen many examples of dedication, perseverance and sacrifice among health workers, he said, and that even when family members have tested positive for the virus they have remained steadfast in their duty and continued to do their utmost to protect the country and its people.

New agreement for green hydrogen production plant in NEOM

Updated 07 July 2020

New agreement for green hydrogen production plant in NEOM

  • The joint venture project is the first partnership for NEOM with international and national partners in the renewable energy field

JEDDAH: A $5 billion production facility powered by renewable energy to supply 650 tons of carbon-free hydrogen daily for export to global markets is to be built at the main NEOM site under a new agreement.

Air Products, a world-leading industrial gases company, and ACWA Power, a developer and operator of power generation and desalinated water production plants, signed the agreement with NEOM to build the hydrogen-based ammonia production facility, which will be equally owned by the three partners. It aims to produce green ammonia for export to global markets by 2025.

The joint venture project is the first partnership for NEOM, a new model for sustainable living located in the north west corner of the Saudi Arabia, with international and national partners in the renewable energy field. It will include the innovative integration of more than four gigawatts of renewable power from solar and wind power and storage using various methods of production.

“This partnership reflects our deep commitment to developing a carbon-positive society that will be a beacon for sustainable living and a solution to many of the environmental challenges facing the world,” said Nadhmi Al Nasr, NEOM CEO.

“NEOM’s Board of Directors, headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the company’s executive team are delighted to announce this significant milestone, the world’s largest renewable hydrogen project, for NEOM to make it a global leader in green hydrogen production and green fuels. We are also excited that two world-class organizations, Air Products and ACWA Power, have joined us in developing this major project, the first of many developments at this scale that will put NEOM at the heart of a new future society.”

“We are honored and proud to partner with ACWA Power and NEOM and use proven technologies to make the world’s dream of 100 percent green energy a reality,” said Seifi Ghasemi, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer for Air Products.

Ghasemi went on to say that harnessing the unique profile of NEOM’s sun and wind to convert water to hydrogen will yield a clean source of energy on a massive scale and will rid the world of over 3 million tons of CO2 emissions annually and eliminate smog-forming emissions and other pollutants from the equivalent of over 700,000 cars.

Air Products will be the exclusive off-taker of the green ammonia and intends to transport it around the world to be turned into green hydrogen for the transportation market.

ACWA Power chairman Mohammed A. Abunayyan said that “based in NEOM’s Industrial Cluster and enabled by its unique mandate, this investment will integrate and localize cutting-edge technologies that will harness solar and wind power to produce sustainable and globally accessible green energy.”

“ACWA Power has a proven track record of leveraging pioneering renewable technologies to deliver carbon-free power at the lowest cost. With our global experience, we are confident that our collaboration with an industry-leading company like Air Products will create significant opportunities in the production of green hydrogen, and further us in our goal to help countries meet their clean energy targets and unlock significant socio-economic benefits.”