Energy Recovery has announced total awards of $16.6 million (USD) to supply PX® Pressure Exchangers® (PX) and related equipment and services to multiple desalination facilities in the Middle East. The awards include Energy Recovery’s first contract to support the conversion of a mega-project (>50,000 cubic meters per day) thermal desalination facility to more cost-efficient seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) desalination technology.
“These awards cap a record-breaking year for Energy Recovery, and we are pleased to see a trend we have long anticipated – the conversion of thermal desalination capacity to large-scale SWRO facilities – move from our pipeline to our backlog,” said Robert Mao, Energy Recovery Chairman and Interim President and Chief Executive Officer. “Much of the Middle East’s installed capacity is thermal desalination, which was largely built before technologies like the PX greatly improved the economics of SWRO. As older thermal desalination facilities reach the end of their useful life, owners and operators are evaluating the path forward. These facilities are needed to maintain current water supply, so they cannot be decommissioned without a replacement plan. Longer-term, the current thermal capacity of more than 20 million cubic meters per day creates an additional layer of growth potential for Energy Recovery.”
Shipments for these awards are expected to begin in Q1 2020 and continue throughout 2020. Energy Recovery estimates the PXs supplied to these facilities will prevent more than 600,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year. The facilities will collectively produce over 700,000 cubic meters of water per day.
“New-build SWRO facilities are driving economic development and providing much needed potable water across the Middle East. In parallel, older thermal facilities are almost universally choosing to replace or augment thermal production with SWRO technologies and are turning to Energy Recovery to help create a more cost- and carbon-efficient facility,” shared Energy Recovery Vice President of Water Rodney Clemente. “Although costs vary based on local conditions, thermal water production costs are on average two times higher than SWRO. Given these savings, even some newer thermal facilities with years of useful life remaining are evaluating a switch to SWRO. As this trend plays out in the coming years, we expect customers to continue to turn to the PX, which provides the lowest lifecycle cost of any energy recovery device on the market.”