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Monday, April 22, 2024

Dubai Water Program Advances Green Economy

Dubai’s Ascension as a Premier City Fueled by Sustainability. Dubai’s remarkable ascent as a global hub for living and working has been firmly anchored in a sustainability strategy prioritizing alignment with nature.

At its core lies a resolute commitment to optimizing the utilization of the emirate’s natural resources.

An ambitious water reclamation initiative, driven by Dubai Municipality over the past five decades, has stood as a pivotal pillar of the city’s endeavor to judiciously steward its ecological assets.

This program has propelled Dubai to achieve an impressive water reuse rate of 90%, significantly reducing its reliance on desalinated water and groundwater. Looking ahead, Dubai aims to elevate recycled water utilization to 100% by 2030.

The rewards of attaining this target extend beyond resource management, as Dubai Municipality’s water reuse strategy converges with the emirate’s Net Zero Carbon Emissions Strategy 2050.

Beyond safeguarding groundwater reserves for future generations, water recycling substantially diminishes the electricity needed for energy-intensive desalination, thus contributing to reduced greenhouse gas emissions. In the next seven years, Dubai has set a goal to trim desalinated water and related power consumption by 30%.

Dawoud Al Hajri, Director-General of Dubai Municipality, noted, “Dubai’s leadership recognized at an early stage that water conservation is key to ensuring sustainable development.”

This strategy is integral to Dubai Municipality’s concerted drive to transform the emirate into a green economy hub and epitomizes the harmonization of swift economic growth with environmental preservation.

Dubai embarked on its water reclamation journey in the late 1960s with the construction of the emirate’s first wastewater treatment plant in Al Khawaneej in 1969. As urbanization surged, wastewater treatment and recycled water demand escalated. Subsequent expansions, including the 2015 upgrade of the Warsan plant and the 2016 enhancement of the Jebel Ali plant, have bolstered Dubai’s water recycling capacity.

The city extensively employs reclaimed water for landscaping and green spaces, saving approximately 265 million cubic meters of water annually. This network, spanning about 2,400 kilometers, irrigates around 10,400 hectares, including public gardens and property developments.

Between 1980 and 2022, Dubai produced over 4.5 billion cubic meters of reclaimed water, resulting in substantial annual savings of about AED 2 billion. Dubai aims to double its recycled water production to over 8 billion cubic meters by 2030.

The innovative use of recycled water extends to various domains, from central cooling to firefighting, ushering in cost savings and fostering energy-efficient technologies.

Dubai’s pioneering approach to sustainability includes the implementation of advanced technologies in wastewater treatment plants, harnessing anaerobic digestion to minimize energy consumption and reduce carbon emissions.

Dubai’s strides in water recycling have garnered international recognition, including winning first place in the International Water Reuse and Recycling Award in 2022.

As Dubai marks the Year of Sustainability, its water recycling and resource management initiative serves as an inspiration, propelling the city towards a harmonious, resource-conscious future.

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