Water tops agenda at October conference
WaterWorld Middle East to be held in Abu Dhabi from 12 to 14 October
The upcoming WaterWorld Middle East conference and exhibition will play a key role helping governments in countries such as the UAE to meet the infrastructure demands of booming populations, the Honorary Vice-Chairman of the World Energy Council has said.
"A dependable supply of water is not only crucial for life, it's essential for building a healthy and vibrant economy," said Dr Hisham Khatib, who is one of the keynote speakers at the event this year. "By bringing cutting-edge technology together with industry experts, WaterWorld Middle East is a superb forum to promote sustainable water infrastructure development in the region."
The WaterWorld Middle East Conference and Exhibition will run in tandem with POWER-GEN Middle East from 12 to 14 October at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC). The event will bring together the region's leading plant owners and operators, consultants, utilities, investors and academics, with representatives of over 80 companies from 30 countries.
"WaterWorld Middle East comes at a crucial time for the Gulf Cooperation Council, when local governments are looking to invest over $130bn over the next decade to meet future water and energy demands," said Tom Freyberg, the conference director of WaterWorld Middle East.
Segments of the water and wastewater industry in the GCC are growing at between 14 and 20%.
Freyberg said: "To meet growing demand, there's more focus on sustainable practices, wastewater reuse and asset management - these issues will all feature strongly in WaterWorld Middle East 2014. There are opportunities for domestic and international companies, including small to medium Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), local fabricators, EPC contractors, and design and engineering companies and consultants."
In Abu Dhabi, driven by population growth, demand for potable water and subsequent sanitation services are expected to double from now until 2030. Three major desalination projects are in the works, as are plans to reduce distributed losses of desalinated water.
Four major wastewater treatment works in Abu Dhabi and Al Ain have been commissioned to replace and expand the capacity of existing plants, which are coming to the end of their working lives.
Major projects underway include Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company's (ADSSC) Strategic Tunnel Enhancement Programme (STEP), which will have the capacity to treble the capital's current collection capacity. When complete, STEP will be one of the largest tunnelled sewerage systems in the world, supporting Abu Dhabi's growth and reducing operation and maintenance costs.
As event partner for WaterWorld Middle East, the ADSSC's managing director Alan Thompson will be a keynote speaker, presenting an update on the STEP project and give delegates a chance to see the visitor centre as a technical tour.
Other local organisations speaking in WWME 2014 include the Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) on the Al Zawra reverse osmosis desalination project and also the Regulation and Supervision Bureau (RSB) on Abu Dhabi's Water Reuse Framework.