+27 71 448 3496
leon@whyafrica.co.za

Orano’s desalination plant cuts energy consumption by 40%

Share Article
Through an innovative energy recovery system and a PPA solar energy deal, Orano Mining Namibia has been able to reduce energy consumption at its Erongo Desalination Plant (EDP) in Namibia by more than 40%. Image credit: Leon Louw for WhyAfrica

Orano’s desalination plant cuts energy consumption by 40%

Through an innovative energy recovery system and a PPA solar energy deal, Orano Mining Namibia has been able to reduce energy consumption at its Erongo Desalination Plant (EDP) in Namibia by more than 40%   

Orano Mining Namibia recently entered into a 10-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with French company InnoSun Energy Holdings to provide 5MW solar electricity to its desalination plant close to Swakopmund.

Orano’s desalination plant is a landmark along the C34 from Swakopmund to Wlotzkasbaken. One can follow the large water distribution pipes all the way driving out of Swakopmund to Henties Bay on the west coast.

The desalination plant was constructed between 2008 and 2010 by Orano, then known as Areva Resources Namibia. It was initially built to supply Areva’s Trekkopje uranium mine with water. When the uranium price tanked after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan in 2011, Trekkopje was put on care and maintenance.

Orano and the Namibian authorities decided then that the desalination plant could supply water to other operating uranium plants in the region and to a large part of the population in Erongo region, which it still does today.

Efficient energy recovery system

Desalination plants are by nature energy intensive and expensive to operate. Therefore, Orano has implemented an energy recovery system, and in addition signed an agreement with InnoSun to provide solar electricity to further reduce reliance on the national grid.

These energy reduction measures will enable Orano to make the provision of water to the Erongo Region from a green electricity source more affordable in the long term, and contribute greatly to efforts to reduce the carbon footprint of the EDP. This project is part of the Orano group policy aiming to lower its carbon footprint and increase the share of low-carbon electricity at its operating sites worldwide

According to a recent statement by Orano, the company continues to focus on reducing the carbon footprint of the EDP by making it more energy efficient.

The EDP is an important contributor to the overall supply of potable water in the Erongo Region, providing a substantial portion of the water supply of the town of Swakopmund, the uranium mines and other industries.

“It has done so safely with 12 years of continuous operation without a single lost time injury (LTI) and its environmental management system adheres to the highest standards, as confirmed by ongoing impact testing around the operating site by independent third parties,” the company states.

In 2021, the EDP set a new record by producing 12.7 million cubic meters of fresh water. The cumulative production since 2013 has now reached over 83 million cubic meters.

At its Trekkopje Project near Arandis, Orano continues its care and maintenance activities. The Trekkopje mine and plant was near completion before the commencement of care and maintenance. All structures built on the mine are protected and can be commissioned when required and at minimal cost.

Orano continues to carry out environmental monitoring, including monitoring of rehabilitation trials, biodiversity, groundwater and effluent sampling, weather, as well as air quality and radiation levels.

The EDP is an important contributor to the overall supply of potable water in the Erongo Region, providing a substantial portion of the water supply of the town of Swakopmund, the uranium mines and other industries. Image credit: Leon Louw for WhyAfrica

WhyAfrica does research and reports about natural resources and the primary sectors of African economies, and the infrastructure, equipment and engineering methods needed to extract and utilise these resources in an efficient, responsible, sustainable, ethic and environmentally friendly way, so that it will benefit the people of Africa.

Furthermore, WhyAfrica promotes Africa as an investment and travel destination, analyses the continent’s business environment and investment opportunities, and reports on how the political economy of African countries affects its development.         

WhyAfrica provides you with business intelligence that matters. Africa is our business, and we want it to be yours too. To subscribe to WhyAfrica’s free newsletter or digital magazine, and for more news on Africa, visit the website at www.whyafrica.co.za or send a direct message. WhyAfrica launched its first ever digital magazine in November 2021.

The company will undertake its annual road trip through South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, the DRC, Malawi, Tanzania and Kenya in 2023. If you are interested in sponsorship or advertising opportunities, please contact me at leon@whyafrica.co.za. We have a wide range of different packages and combo deals to give your company the greatest exposure to a rapidly growing, African readership.  

The 2022 Southern Africa Road trip issue of WhyAfrica’s magazine is now available in print. The magazine was distributed in South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana during WhyAfrica’s 2022 Southern Africa Overland Road Trip, the company’s new and innovative platform. WhyAfrica has expanded its product range and now offers its readers, followers, advertisers, subscribers and partners the following:

  • Daily 24/7 online articles on WhyAfrica’s website (FREE)
  • Daily updates on WhyAfrica’s social media platforms (FREE)
  • Newsletters delivered to a handpicked audience every two weeks (FREE)
  • Two printed magazine per year distributed at large events and during our road trips across Africa featuring original, in-depth articles (FREE) with great, on-site photographs by the WhyAfrica team (FOR SALE UPON REQUEST)
  • Four digital magazines per year (FREE)
  • Live updates, video clips, articles, and podcasts during and after WhyAfrica’s annual road trips (Southern Africa in 2022, East Africa in 2023 and West Africa in 2024) (FREE)
  • Sponsorship and advertising opportunities for the annual WhyAfrica Overland Road Trips (PAID FOR)
  • A library where companies doing business in Africa can display scientific or research papers (PAID FOR)
  • A product section where companies doing business in Africa can display new offerings or services (PAID FOR)
  • Media partnerships with, and a presence at, most of the major conferences and exhibitions in the African mining, energy, agriculture, infrastructure, water management, ESG, environmental management, tourism, development, and conservation sectors (FREE)
  • WhyAfrica connects potential investors with new ventures in Africa and suppliers and service providers with existing companies in Africa (PAID FOR)
  • WhyAfrica assists companies in generating content focused on the wider African business community (PAID FOR)
  • Partnerships with companies doing business in Africa (PAID FOR)
  • Partnerships with companies thinking about expanding into Africa (PAID FOR)
  • In 2023 subscribers will have access to our in-depth articles about the African political economy, research, and country reports about the countries we visit on our road trips, and trends in the sectors that we cover (PAID FOR)
  • A WhyAfrica book is in the pipeline and if all goes according to plan, should be published towards the end of 2023 (PAID FOR)
  • The WhyAfrica consultancy arm assists and advises companies doing business in Africa through utilising our extensive global business network (PAID FOR)

Become part of the WhyAfrica community. Tell us your story. Expand your footprint across Africa and partner with us to make the most of your African experience.           

Share Article

Sectors

AgricultureEnvironmental Management & Climate ChangeEnergyESGInfrastructureMiningPolitical EconomyTourism and ConservationWater Management