Conserve water & power, says Riyadh governor

Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar during the opening of the 11th Saudi Water and Electricity Forum in the capital.

Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar during the opening of the 11th Saudi Water and Electricity Forum in the capital.

Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar on Sunday called for conservation of water and electricity, even as the Water and Electricity minister said Saudi Arabia will need an investment of SR500 billion for power projects over the next 10 years to cope with rising demand.

“Water and electricity are very important to each and everyone of us. Let’s conserve them and use them properly and wisely,” Prince Faisal said.

He made the statement as sponsor of the two-day 11th Saudi Forum on Water and Electricity at a hotel here on Sunday.

Prince Faisal also relayed the wish for a successful forum from the Saudi leadership, headed by Custodian of Two Holy Mosques King Salman.

Speaking on the occasion, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, deputy minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, thanked the Riyadh governor for sponsoring the forum.

“Economic growth and an increase in the population during the last 20 years has led to a rise in domestic energy consumption due to inefficient energy production and use,” he said.

“This has resulted in an increased wastage of energy waste. To address this problem, the Saudi Center of Energy Efficiency (SCEE) was established.

It goes without saying that this reflects the Kingdom’s desire to come up with a program for practical solutions to reduce energy waste,” he said.

Prince Abdul Aziz said that this topped the list of SCEE’s tasks to rationalize and raise the efficiency of the Kingdom’s energy consumption situation. “This was in coordination with some 30 government entities and institutions, and enterprises in the private sector,” he said.

Infrastructure, transportation, and business and industry combined for 90 percent of the total energy consumption, he said. “The SCEE has ensured that all energy services companies are properly licensed and adequately equipped to provide technical solutions and raise consumption efficiency.”

Water and Electricity Minister Abdullah Al-Hussayen said the new water and electricity tariff rates are important to raise efficiency in energy consumption. “The country expects peak electricity to hit 90,000 megawatts (MW) in 2022. Installed capacity is around 70,000 MW now,” he said.

The minister said contracts to build an electricity grid to connect Saudi Arabia and Egypt would be signed before mid-2016, and the project would operate at full capacity before mid-2019.

The project aims to allow power trading between the two countries. Peak-time summer power consumption in the Kingdom falls between noon and mid-afternoon, when air conditioners are used most intensively, while in Egypt the peak is after sunset.

The forum was also attended by Prince Turki bin Mohammed bin Saud, president of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology and Ali Al-Naimi, minister of petroleum and mineral resources.


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