Qatar’s General Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa) is to issue a tender for the construction of a desalination plant, with capacity of up to 50 million gallons of water a day, in the first quarter of 2009.

Saad al-Mohannadi, director of technical affairs at Kahramaa, told MEED’s Qatar Projects conference on 20 January that the engineering, procurement and construction documents as well as the technical specification for a reverse osmosis plant were being prepared.

He later confirmed to MEED that the plant’s capacity was likely to be in the range of 30-50 million gallons per day.

The facility’s capacity and location have yet to be finalised, but three locations are being considered: Ras Rakan, Jumail and Messaieed.

Kahramaa also plans to tender the consultancy contract for a new power project in the first half of this year. The consultant will study three sites, at Ras Laffan, Messaieed and Umm Bab, which could accommodate a power plant, known as Facility D.

The construction of the plant will, however, not proceed for several years as projects already underway are expected to be sufficient to meet demand growth over the next five years.

Power consumption in Qatar is expected to rise to 7,791MW by 2013, from 3,990MW today. By 2010, Kahramaa expects to have 9,032MW of capacity installed.

Demand for desalinated water, however, will outstrip supply by 2011-2013 unless the new reverse osmosis facility is built.

Qatar’s desalination capacity will total 324 million gallons per day in 2010, but water consumption is expected to reach 380 million gallons per day by 2013.

Al-Mohanndi also said that the potential for using solar and wind energy in Qatar was being studied and the findings would be published at the end of the year.

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