Neom progresses circular water economy strategy

The Saudi Arabian greenfield development of Neom has chosen Worley to provide engineering and advisory services to its energy and water company, Enowa.

It will provide the water supply infrastructure that will deliver up to two million cubic meters of desalinated water per day to the site, which will include The Line smart city development.

Water infrastructure projects

The project scopes relate to water production, brine beneficiation, management, and storage. The water infrastructure projects will be powered by renewable electricity, and the desalination process will not discharge any brine into the sea. This will help reduce negative environmental impacts on the Red Sea’s fragile ecosystem.

“Neom intends to deliver a sustainable circular water economy, and we are pleased to be able to use our global expertise to deliver ‘first of a kind’ water solutions that minimise impacts on the natural environment and align with our purpose of delivering a more sustainable world,” said Jim Lenton, group senior vice president, Worley.

The approach will see Worley provide services for implementing commercially viable solutions for brine beneficiation – a by-product of seawater desalination – into saleable products such as gypsum, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), salt, potassium-based fertilisers, and magnesium.

Worley says the facilities will help create a water circular economy from unavoidable brine production from the desalination plant. Aligned to the production of low carbon footprint of potable water, the beneficiated brine products will be sustainably produced and thus valuable in their respective markets.

“This agreement provides the initial steps to revolutionise the water industry towards a truly sustainable and circular solution,” said Gavin van Tonder, executive director of Enowa Water

The services will be executed by both Advisian, Worley’s global consulting business, and Worley staff from 17 countries around the globe. This award extends Advisian and Worley’s relationship with Enowa, which has grown over the last two years from feasibility and advisory studies to include six portfolios encompassing the satellite zero liquid discharge desalination plants, demonstration testing facility, research and development, large-scale desalination plant, brine processing and technical/commercial advisory support.

Advisian has a growing global portfolio of water projects which includes various desalination and brine beneficiation projects.

“Water is at the core of sustainable development. It’s critical for healthy ecosystems, for socio-economic progress and to support life itself,” said Steven Whittall, senior vice president, Advisian.


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