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EWEC Announce ENGIE & TAQA as Partners to Develop Mirfa 2 Reverse Osmosis Seawater Desalination Project

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EWEC Announce ENGIE & TAQA as Partners to Develop Mirfa 2 Reverse Osmosis Seawater Desalination Project

ENGIE and TAQA sign Water Purchase Agreement and Shareholders Agreement with EWEC for the 120 million imperial gallons per day RO desalination plant

Mirfa 2 Reverse Osmosis to become the UAE’s third largest low-carbon intensive RO plant once fully commercially operational

Abu Dhabi, UAE – xx January 2023: EWEC (Emirates Water and Electricity Company), a leading company in the integrated coordination of planning, purchasing, and supply of water and electricity across the UAE, today announced the award for its Mirfa 2 Reverse Osmosis (M2 RO) Independent Water Project. The project for the development of the low-carbon intensive RO desalination plant was awarded to a consortium led by ENGIE. TAQA will invest equity and take on the majority share in the project, and a role in the Operations and Maintenance company. Following the award, the project’s Water Purchase Agreement (WPA) and the Shareholders Agreement (SHA) were signed between TAQA, ENGIE, and EWEC.

M2 RO will desalinate seawater using low-carbon intensive RO technology to produce up to 120 million imperial gallons per day (MIGD) of potable water, equivalent to 545,530 cubic metres, sufficient to meet the water demand of up to 210,000 households in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. Low-carbon intensive RO water desalination plants are up to 96 per cent more efficient compared to traditional thermal desalination plants, and enable a more than 85 per cent reduction in carbon emissions associated with water production.

Othman Al Ali, Chief Executive Officer of EWEC, said: “We look forward to this strategic collaboration with TAQA and ENGIE, which will see the development of the UAE’s third largest low-carbon intensive RO water desalination plant. The development of the M2 RO water desalination project enables EWEC to further accelerate its strategic initiative of decoupling power and water generation capacity, and implement tangible and effective actions that contribute to the achievement of UAE Water Security Strategy 2036 and the UAE Net Zero by 2050 strategic initiative objectives. Once commercially operational this project, along with our current and upcoming low-carbon intensive RO desalination plants, significantly empowers EWEC to manage water and power generation more efficiently and effectively, and reinforces our position as a leader in advancing sustainable, secure water and power supply in Abu Dhabi and across the UAE.”

Farid Al Awlaqi, Executive Director of Generation at TAQA Group, commented: “As the low carbon power and water champion of Abu Dhabi, TAQA is proud to be a leading shareholder in the M2 RO project, which will be critical to supporting national decarbonisation efforts and long-term water security for the UAE. As a company anchored in ESG principles, this project is in line with our recently announced ESG strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, with expanding the use of the highly efficient reverse osmosis technology and decoupling power and water production critical to this goal as it reduces the carbon footprint of water production. The project also supports our growth ambitions to grow RO to more than two-thirds of our capacity by 2030 and TAQA will also be taking a role in the operations and maintenance of the plant, a key pillar in our capability building of the next decade.”

Frederic Claux, Managing Director, Thermal and Supply AMEA, ENGIE, said “As a leading actor in desalination and an expert in reverse osmosis technology, we are delighted to add M2 RO to our portfolio. This is a significant win for our regional business demonstrating the trust placed in us by government authorities and by our partners in supporting the growing demand for water while meeting the demands of a net zero carbon future.”

Ahead of the project award and WPA and SHA signings, the submitted proposals went through a detailed technical and commercial evaluation process to select the best proposal. Through the M2 RO project, 60 per cent will be owned by TAQA, while the remaining 40 per cent will be owned by ENGIE. The project’s financial closure is expected to occur in Q1 2023, enabling initial water production in summer 2025, and full production by Q3 2025.

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