France-based Veolia, through its subsidiary SIDEM, has been awarded a $320-million contract for the first phase of the 818,000 cu-meter-per-day Hassyan seawater desalination plant under development in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Veolia will engineer and supply key water technology for the plant that is based on the reverse osmosis process under a contract awarded by Dubai Electricity & Water Authority and Saudi Arabia-based ACWA Power. The latter was selected by the authority in August 2023 as preferred bidder for plant construction and operation under a $914-million project.

The desalination plant, located on a 252,300-sq-meter site, will be powered by solar energy with a consumption rate estimated at 2.9 kW hours per cu meter and capacity of 818,000 cu meters per day.

It will be the second-largest plant in the world using seawater reverse osmosis and the largest powered by solar energy, as well as the first project undertaken by the authority under its new independent water producer model.

AcwaDemaUAEDesal.jpgRepresentatives of Dubai Electricity & Water Authority and Saudi Arabia-based ACWA Power at the signing ceremony for the first phase of the project.
Photo courtesy DEWA

The new desalination plant, which will be financed via debt and equity, is located 55 km southwest of Dubai Creek, with potential to supply drinking water to two million people when it comes online in 2026. It will increase UAE total desalinated water capacity to 3 million cu-meters-per-day,

The utility signed a 30-year water purchaser and shareholder agreement with ACWA Power in October 2023, with financial close in April 2024. Its long-term plan is to increase its desalinated water capacity to 3.3 million cu meters per day by 2030—up from the current 2.2 million cu meters—to meet the UAE’s domestic and commercial water demands.

Scotmas, a UK-based provider of chlorine dioxide generators and dosing systems, has been picked to supply its Bravo MX chlorine dioxide water disinfection technology to enhance plant drinking water purification and safety.