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Monday, 07 January 2013

EU supports pioneering renewable energy and water plant in Djibouti

The European Union will support a project to build a desalination plant which will use renewable energy to provide water to 200,000 inhabitants, one-fourth of the country's population, in some of Djibouti's poorest areas.
The EU will provide €40.5 million out of the total estimated budget of €46 million for the new water desalination plant. The remaining €5.5 million will be financed from Djibouti. The project will consist of two phases of 22.500 m³ each. The facility will be powered by renewable energy and a wind farm is planned as part of the second stage of the PEPER project.
The PEPER energy and water integrated project is one of the components of the EU's Sustainable Energy for All initiative, which President Barroso announced in April and will also support the Government of Djibouti's reform programme in the energy sector. The project is in line with commitments made at the Rio +20 summit and marks the first step towards Djibouti's goal of moving towards 100% renewable energy by 2020.
Djibouti suffers from an acute water shortage and has recently endured a prolonged drought, which has led to a serious food crisis in the country. The lack of access to water has led to recent fighting and riots in the country. Seawater desalination is the only viable way for Djibouti to be able to tackle its water scarcity in the short run. However, such a strategy requires low cost energy to be readily available, which is where the wind farm can contribute.

Source: European Commission