By Petronella Sibeene
NamWater and UraMin Namibia on Friday announced a joint undertaking to construct a seawater intake and brine disposal system that will support the establishment of desalination plants in Swakopmund.
The project will involve the construction of two desalination plants with one facility to extract water from the sea.
Capable of producing more than 50 million cubic metres of potable water per year, the facility will cost an estimated US$140 million.
UraMin’s interest in building the plant stems from its development of Namibia’s third major uranium mine at Trekkopje, near Swakopmund.
The plant, to be situated about three kilometres north of Wlotzkasbaken, will facilitate the supply of water to the Trekkopje Mine and NamWater’s clients in the Erongo Region. Construction of the facility is expected to start once it has been approved and is expected to be complete by early 2009.
Plans for a desalination plant were unveiled in 1998, when NamWater sought to meet a growing demand for water in the coastal regions.
Managing Director of NamWater, Dr Vaino Shivute, told the press on Friday that 45 million cubic metres of desalinated water will be produced each year.
Twenty-five million cubic metres are earmarked for supply to NamWater clients.
Erongo currently consumes about 12 million cubic metres of water annually, with Walvis Bay accounting for 4.3 million cubic metres, Rio Tinto’s Rǟ