Thursday, August 19, 2021

Inside Africa’s Largest Seawater Desalination Plant in Morocco - Douira Seawater Desalination Plant



Inside Africa’s largest seawater desalination plant in Morocco - Construction work on the Africa’s largest seawater desalination plant is well on track in Morocco, according to a  recent statement by a Moroccan government officials. The Douira seawater desalination plant project, which has an investment budget of  US $310 million  and a treatment capacity of roughly 75 million cubic meters of desalinated water per year, is located in the southern coastal city of Agadir, a major city and capital of the region of Souss-Massa, with a population of more than 450,000 people. The plant is expected to produce nearly 275.000 cubic meters of desalinated water daily before reaching its maximum capacity of 450.000 cubic meters per day.
The project comes at a time when Morocco's water reservoirs are facing major shortages as a result of a decrease in the national average dam filling rate, which has been declining since September 2019. In a report by World Resources Institute (WRI), Morocco is among 33 countries to face extremely high water stress by 2040. The country needs to build a more efficient and resilient water management system to face  the sure-to-come climate change threats, the report warned.

Desalination of seawater appears as a solution for this problem. Advanced desalination technologies that are applied to seawater and brackish water prove to be effective alternatives in a variety of situations. Desalination process involves the removal of  excess salts and minerals from water or the chemical process of changing seawater into potable water. Presently, the two major technologies that are mainly used for desalination are the thermal desalination and Membrane desalination technology.
Membrane desalination uses high pressure from motor pumps to separate permeates water from brackish water or seawater based on membrane, while thermal desalination uses heat to vaporize permeate water. Spanish company Abengoa, designed the Membrane desalination plant in Agadir, and  are in charge of construction, which is expected to be in operation by the end of this year. The 275,000 m3 per day desalination plant will be the largest plant designed for the combined use of drinking water and irrigation, when completed.

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