General Electric

Award recognizes GE’s role in helping Saudi Arabia address its water and power challenges


Source: General Electric

GE Energy, which is supplying advanced technology solutions for the world’s largest independent water and power plant, today received the inaugural Power and Utility Company for Jubail and Yanbu (Marafiq) Award for Sustainability from Marafiq, a Saudi Arabian integrated utility company.

The award recognizes the key role GE Energy is playing in the development of a milestone project intended to contribute to the Saudi economy and social welfare, as well as the environment.

GE Energy was cited for supplying key technology and services, including high efficiency gas turbine combined cycle systems and a complete Mark* VIe plant control system for the Marafiq Independent Water and Power Plant in Jubail Industrial City in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province. Designed to provide 2,700 megawatts of power and 800,000 cubic meters of desalinated water per day for industrial and domestic use, plans are for the plant to support the diversification of Saudi Arabia’s growing economy and help to meet the Kingdom’s growing need for water and power.

Saudi Arabia’s electricity use has been increasing at a rate of about seven percent a year, and the Ministry of Water and Electricity estimates that the Kingdom will require up to 30 gigawatts of additional power generating capacity by 2020. The Marafiq Independent Water and Power Plant is part of a series of projects in Saudi Arabia to produce power and water for the Kingdom’s growing industrial economy.

Created to celebrate and encourage sustainable practices that demonstrate and promote environmental protection and social and economic development, the Marafiq award was presented to GE during the Fourth Saudi Water and Power Forum 2008.

“GE is fully committed to ecomagination, our corporate initiative to imagine, build and deliver innovative solutions that solve today’s environmental challenges and benefit customers and society at large,” said Joseph Anis, GE Energy’s regional executive for the Middle East. “The Marafiq project represents an outstanding example of how technology can be applied to meet both the world’s energy and environmental requirements.”

The integration of water and power production at a single site is a growing trend, especially in the Middle East, where population and industrial growth rates are exceeding most other regions of the world. “With our participation in this integrated water and power production plant, GE is well positioned to help address both of these needs simultaneously,” added Anis.

GE Energy’s role in the project includes leading an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) consortium and supplying four combined-cycle power blocks, including 12 Frame 7FA gas-turbine generator sets, four steam turbine-generator and 12 heat recovery steam generators, for the Marafiq project. In addition to power for the Saudi grid, the plant’s steam extraction will be used for desalination.

The Mark* VIe control system being provided by GE will allow the total water and power facility to be controlled on a single platform, increasing plant efficiency and allowing it to better address the growing demands for reliable power in Saudi Arabia.

Block one of the Marafiq plant is expected to enter commercial service during the second quarter of 2009, blocks two and three in the third and fourth quarters of 2009 respectively, and block four during the first quarter of 2010.

Marafiq was formed in 2000 to provide integrated utility services to industrial, commercial and residential customers in the cities of Jubail and Yanbu. Four major shareholders—the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), Saudi Arabian Oil Company (ARAMCO) and the Public Investment Fund—and seven private companies, own Marafiq.

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