Taweelah Reverse Osmosis facility reaches 90 per cent capacity
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EWEC’s Taweelah Reverse Osmosis facility surpasses 90 per cent capacity

EWEC’s Taweelah Reverse Osmosis facility surpasses 90 per cent capacity

The facility is currently producing 183 MIGD of desalinated water making Taweelah the world’s largest operating reverse osmosis facility

Marisha Singh
Taweelah Reverse Osmosis achieves 90 percent capacity

Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC) announced that the Taweelah Reverse Osmosis (RO) facility has surpassed 90 per cent capacity. The facility is currently producing 183 million imperial gallons per day (MIGD) of desalinated water. This makes Taweelah RO the world’s largest operating reverse osmosis facility.

When running at full capacity, Taweelah RO can supply upto 200 MIGD and the desalination facility is sufficient to meet the water demand for over 350,000 households. The plant was completed in 2022. The desalination facility is sufficient to meet the water demand for over 350,000 households.

Othman Al Ali, chief executive officer of EWEC, said, “Taweelah RO is part of EWEC’s strategic shift of its water and power generation portfolio, supporting the decarbonisation of the energy sector in line with the UAE Net Zero by 2050 strategic initiative. We are proud of the collaboration with our partners that has enabled Taweelah RO to reach over 90 per cent of its water production capacity, making Taweelah RO the world’s largest commercially operating reverse osmosis desalination facility.”

Advantages of reverse osmosis

EWEC’s adoption of low-carbon intensive RO water desalination technology is a key pillar of its initiative to decouple water and power generation.

Reverse osmosis works by filtering unwanted pollutants such as bacteria, viruses and other microbial organisms from water by pressuring the treated water which forces water substances through a semipermeable membrane. Throughout the process, the pollutants are separated from the water and flushed out, which produces ultra pure water.

It has one of the lowest energy requirements, and some of the highest recovery rates. Water treatment through RO increases energy efficiency by 96 per cent when compared to traditional thermal desalination plants and reduces carbon emissions by more than 85 per cent.

“We plan an additional 290 MIGD of new RO production capacity by 2027. By 2030, 90 percent of all water desalination will be produced using reverse osmosis, enabling an 88 per cent reduction in our carbon emissions associated with water production,” said Al Ali.

Taweelah RO is EWEC’s fourth operational desalination plant, joining Mirfa 1, and the Fujairah F1 and Fujairah F2 hybrid water desalination and power plants. EWEC has also commissioned the development of four additional low-carbon intensive water production facilities, including Mirfa 2 RO, Shuweihat 4 RO, and two standalone RO water desalination plants as part of the Abu Dhabi Islands RO Independent Water Project. EWEC partners with 16 plants for the supply of water and electricity across the UAE.

Taweelah RO is owned by TAQA Group, Mubadala and ACWA Power. EWEC is contracted to procure water from Taweelah RO for the next 30 years as part of the Water Purchase Agreement signed in 2019.

The UAE Water Security Strategy 2036 aims to ensure sustainability and continuous access to water during normal and extreme emergency conditions.

Today, most of the country’s potable water – about 42 per cent of the total water requirement comes from 70 major desalination plants, which account for around 14 per cent of the world’s total production of desalinated water. Apart from Taweelah RO, the other major plants are Shuweihat S2 power and water plant in Abu Dhabi. It has a production capacity of 1510 Mega Watt (MW) of electricity and 100 MIGD. The Jebel Ali power station in Dubai is capable of producing 2060 MW and 140 MIGD of water.


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