Ewec to update capacity procurement plan

24 February 2023

Abu Dhabi state offtaker Emirates Water & Electricity Company (Ewec) is expected to announce its latest future capacity requirements summary next month.

The company’s Statement of Future Capacity Requirements Summary Report covering the period 2023 to 2029 is being announced seven months after Ewec published the summary of the previous report in August.

The annual document outlines the needed additional power and water production capacity in the emirate over a seven-year window based on expected macroeconomic developments and the retirement of existing fleets.

The previous capacity requirements report envisaged a 20 per cent gross peak power demand increase from 16.8GW in 2022 to 19.9GW in 2028.

Ewec said: “The otherwise consistent increase in peak and total energy demand from 2022 is impacted by a reduction in exports to Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (Sewa) over 2022-2023 due to the commissioning of their new power plant and the addition of new Adnoc Offshore demand from 2026.”

According to Ewec, last year’s forecast took into consideration the updated GDP projections provided by Finance Department, which indicated a “faster than previously expected rebound in demand growth following the Covid-19 pandemic”.

Last year’s report recommended procuring 1.5GW of solar photovoltaic capacity by 2027 to offset rising fuel costs.

It also cited the need for significant additional thermal capacity to accommodate retirements of existing fleets, which can come in the form of extension or reconfiguration of existing assets as well as new build combined-cycle gas turbine assets.

Last year’s capacity forecast underlined the need for up to 100MW of reserve-optimised batteries, which can provide one-hour depth storage, by 2025.

In terms of water desalination capacity, the statement indicated a potential requirement for at least 200 million imperial gallons a day (MIGD) of capacity by 2026.

Ewec’s project’s activities in recent months have aligned with these projections.

The bidding process is under way for the 1.5GW Al-Ajban solar PV project, with Ewec expecting to receive proposals by June.

RELATED READ: Mirfa 2 award sends positive market signal

It has recently awarded the contract to develop the 120MIGD Mirfa 2 seawater reverse osmosis independent water plant (IWP) projects to France’s Engie and is expected to award the contract to develop the 70MIGD Shuweihat 4 IWP to South Korean/Spanish company GS Inima imminently.

MEED has reported that the procurement process may start before year-end for the next solar PV project to be located in Al-Ain as well as a new gas-fired plant in Sweihan.

Ewec has recently sought transaction advisers for its first battery energy storage system (bess) project, which consists of two 150MW facilities.

MEED also understands that last year’s statement outlined the possibility of procuring a total of up to 16GW of thermal power capacity and around 14GW of solar PV capacity by 2031 to accommodate expected demand until 2036.

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Jennifer Aguinaldo
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