NEOM announced yesterday that it will rely on a pioneering solar technology to produce clean, low-cost, environmentally friendly fresh water, as a step to enhance NEOM's position as a new global destination, a promising center for innovation, environmental conservation and its role as an accelerator of human progress.
NEOM has signed an agreement with the UK-based Solar Water Limited to build the first desalination plant with "Solar Dome" technology in NEOM, northwest of the Kingdom, which is the first of its kind, totally sustainable, and 100% carbon neutral, designed to shape the future of desalination not only in NEOM, but the entire world, providing access to fresh water, one of the world's most pressing issues.
NEOM company confirmed that work on the solar dome project will start next February and it is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
The cost will be 0.34 USD / cubic meter, equivalent to 1.275 SAR / cubic meter, significantly lower than the cost associated with desalination plants using reverse osmosis methods currently in place, and significantly reduces the environmental impact of the desalination process by producing less quantities of saline solution, which is a by-product of water abstraction that can harm neighboring natural ecosystems.
In a statement, NEOM added that the approach of the pioneering and innovative Solar Water Company Limited was developed at Cranfield University in the United Kingdom is the first widespread use of (CSP) Concentrated solar power technology in seawater desalination, as seawater is pumped to "solar dome" and the process of desalination is based on the technique of "solar dome", which can also work at night due to the stored solar energy generated throughout the day.
Minister of Environment, Water, and Agriculture, Abdul Rahman Al-Fadhli commented on this project and said that the adoption of NEOM of this program with its experimental version supports the sustainability goals set by the ministry in the kingdom, as shown in the National Water Strategy 2030, and it is fully in line with the sustainable development goals set by the United Nations .
While CEO of NEOM company, Engineer Nadhmi Al-Nasr, explained that NEOM is characterized by easy access to abundant sea water and completely renewable energy resources, which means that NEOM is in an ideal position to produce low-cost and sustainable fresh water through solar water desalination, adding that this type of technology is evidence of NEOM's commitment to supporting innovation, defending the environment and preserving its purity to provide a comfortable and exceptional life, pointing to the possibility of bringing this technology to areas outside of NEOM through work and cooperation with the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture.
For his part, the CEO of Solar Water Ltd David Ripley said, at the present time, thousands of desalination plants around the world rely heavily on burning fossil fuels for water extraction, and we have the technology to desalinate the water in a totally sustainable and 100% carbon neutral. We are pleased to partner with NEOM, which has a strong vision of what the new future looks like in harmony and integration with nature.