Water

Conference Programmes


Find out more about our expert speakers or view all the session details below.  

Tuesday 16th April



13:30 - 13:35 | Welcome

Hall 3


Dr Najib Dandachi,
 CEO, Al Usul


13:35 - 13:45 | Keynote

H.E. Ahmed Alkaabi, Undersecretary Assistant for Electricity, Water & Future Energy Affairs, Ministry of Energy & Infrastructure, UAE


13:45 - 14:00 | Keynote: Addressing water scarcity through desalination and reuse: The Abu Dhabi case study 


H.E. Eng. Ahmed Mohammed Al Rumaithi, Undersecretary, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 


14:00 - 14:40 | Panel: What water privatisation will mean for regional water development and security

As privatisation projects are tendered what advantages will this bring for regional water provision? This keynote discussion will outline the privatisation landscape in the Mena region. Why is transmission becoming a key focus area and what types of contracts are being awarded?


Dr Najib Dandachi,
 CEO, Al Usul


Tariq Nada, Vice President - Water and Technical Service KSA, Acwa Power


Alicia Dauth, Senior Associate Environmental Consultant - Water, AESG


Ahmed Suwaidi, VP Asset Management, Etihad Water and Electricity 


14:40 - 14:55 | Presentation: Reducing T&D energy consumption

Moving tonnes of water around long-distance networks requires significant amounts of energy. Can this be reduced, to make the process more energy efficient? This presentation will discuss options, including renewable energy.


Lalit Kumar Wasan, SVP Operations & Maintenance, Etihad Water and Electricity 


14:55 - 15:35 | Panel: Funding the path to water decarbonisation - where is the next technology leap?

As utilities try to squeeze more efficiency from their processes and networks, we ask a simple question – is there a technology ‘big leap’ on the horizon that can radically increase an already efficient water system. Is there a big leap opportunity for desalination? Does wastewater offer the next best opportunity for decarbonisation? Does water need more R&D to get the next big leap? Or will increased efficiency and low emissions come from small, incremental improvements?


Moderator: Cody Sigel Combs,
Future Editor, The National


Eng Faisal Ali Rashid,
 Senior Director - Demand Side Management, Supreme Council of Energy


Andres Calderon, Director, Portfolio Management, Investment and Strategy, Generation, TAQA 

Latifa Lahsine, Head of Desalination Center of Excellence and Deputy Head Engineering & Technical Support, Engie


15:35 - 16:15 | Panel: Water security: Fine-tuning emergency response

Unexpected events highlight the importance of emergency planning. In regions that are reliant on desalination for their water supply, emergency response planning is critical to ensure continuity. What can be done to ensure the security of supply in emergency conditions?


Moderator: Alicia Dauth, Senior Associate Environmental Consultant - Water, AESG

Dr Mohamed Hamyd Dawoud, Advisor - Environment Quality, Environment Quality, Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi


Jamal Shadid, Policy Development Director, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 


Ulrich Schott, Business Director Water, Dornier Group

Alya Al Mazrouei, Director of the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, UAE National Center of Meteorology

Wednesday 17th April




MC: Natasha Basu,
Clear Water Solutions (Al Shirawi)


10:30 - 11:15 | Panel: Optimising asset management in the water sector

It is said that approaches to asset management in the water sector are basic when compared to the power industry. There are fewer moving parts, less to go wrong and short-term water security if systems fail. But if asset management uses a run-to-fail rather than preventative, what opportunities are there for improvement? What is the overlap opportunity with digitalisation?


Moderator: Nada Abubakr,
Middle East Lead, Global Water Practice, Ricardo 


Eng Aaesha Saeed Alshehhi,
 Head of Control Center-Water, Etihad Water and Electricity


Omar Alameri, Manager, Water Network Development and Investments, TAQA 

Ian Rodgers, Solutions Architect: Xylem Decision Intelligence Solutions & Assessment Services, Xylem Inc


Ernesto Parra,
COO of GCC Fleet, Engie 


11:15 - 11:30 | Case study: Water digitalisation – a real example of technology in use

This presentation will focus on an example of digital technology in action and the benefits it is bringing. 


Jaime Gonzalez Serrano, Business Development Manager - Water Solutions, Acciona


CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight


11:30 | Helena Kandjumbwa, Chief of Staff, Mukuru Clean Stoves

 


11:40 | Shefali Vinod Ramteke, Founder, C.H.I.R.A.G Technologies

 


11:50 - 12:30 | Panel: Desalination in a digitalised world

What is the role of data, AI, Machine learning and other advanced technologies in improving efficiencies - and therefore emissions - in desalination? Has RO created the best of the efficiencies available, with any future digitalisation dealing in fine margins, or can advanced technologies create true improvement leaps?   

Moderator: Stella Beck, Senior Commercial Advisor, Green Energy Transition, UAE & Qatar, Consulate General of Denmark  


Daniel Ahern, Manager, Operations Maintenance and Technical Support, TAQA 


Chakravarthy Gudipati,
 Executive Director - Water Technologies, Technology Innovation Institute

Dr Muhammad Wakil Shahzad, Associate Professor | Head of Subject (Mechanical & Auto Engineering) Department of Mechanical and Construction Engineering, Northumbria University Newcastle 

Latifa Lahsine, Head of Desalination Center of Excellence and Deputy Head Engineering & Technical Support, Engie 
 


CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight


12:30 | Jane Glavan, Co-Founder, Distant Imagery

 


12:40 | Najwan Mohammad, Founder, ADADK

 


14:00 - 14:40 | Panel: The future of brine in a low carbon water sector

Can rethinking brine discharge not only have environmental benefits, but truly change the economics of water as well? Exploiting minerals has been mooted, but can this be scaled to become commercially viable? Rethinking brine discharge is an important step in water decarbonisation, and this panel will discuss what clear non-discharge approaches (or policies) will mean in future desalination. 

Moderator: Ian Rodgers, Solutions Architect: Xylem Decision Intelligence Solutions & Assessment Services, Xylem Inc 


Oscar Calles, Manager, Desalination and Process, TAQA 

Nadya Mohammed Ali, Water Policy and Strategy Section Head,
Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 


Daniel Baaklini, Desalination Delivery Manager and Senior Expert, Engie


Imteyaz Ahmad, Managing Director, Future Water and Power Consulting 


Mohammed Aloqayli, KSA Businesses Development Manager for Water Solutions, Acciona 


14:40 - 15:25 | Panel: Zero liquid discharge: The economics of wastewater treatment and reuse

ZLD can come with high running costs and energy consumption. A ZLD system can also be used in different industries and maximise the amount of water recovered from wastewater. This panel will look at the economics of ZLD, and how to ensure that it is a cost-viable and cost-efficient option.


Moderator: Imteyaz Ahmad, Managing Director, Future Water and Power Consulting 


Khadija Bin Braik, Technical Regulation Director, Abu Dhabi Department of Energy 

Dr. Uday Kumar Nutakki, Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering / Director (R&D), American University of Ras Al Khaimah


Abdul Malik, Senior Project Manager, WRC Group 


Mel Makdessi, Business Development Director, Utilties & Environment, Middle East, Jacobs


Thierry Froment, CEO, Veolia Water Technologies Middle East 


15:25 - 15:50 | Fireside talk: Circular economy of wastewater - biorefining

Some of the biggest emissions associated with wastewater come from the treatment process itself, with greenhouse gases released. How can the industry decarbonise, and can it create new revenue streams such as biogas. What steps can the sewage industry take to create these new revenue streams that also benefit the environment?

Moderator: Dr. Evan K. Paleologos, Professor and Director Master of Engineering Management and Project Management, Abu Dhabi University


Titia de Mes,
 Sustainability Manager, Abu Dhabi Sewerage Services Company


Alok Srivastava, General Manager, Clear Water Solutions (Al Shirawi)


Mohammed Aloqayli, KSA Businesses Development Manager for Water Solutions, Acciona 


15:50 - 16:30 | Panel: Cutting losses from non-revenue water

Another important aspect of decarbonising water systems - especially in countries reliant on making their potable water through desalination - is to tackle lost water. This panel will explore opportunities, such as improved digitalisation, use of AI and machine learning, IOT monitoring, and explore actual approaches being employed to cut losses.


Moderator: Alok Srivastava, General Manager, Clear Water Solutions (Al Shirawi)

Dr. Evan K. Paleologos, Professor and Director Master of Engineering Management and Project Management, Abu Dhabi University 

Dr. Muhammad Wakil Shahzad, Associate Professor | Head of Subject (Mechanical & Auto Engineering) Department of Mechanical and Construction Engineering, Northumbria University Newcastle 


Ram Srivatsan, Director of Operations & Maintenance, Utico 

Ian Rodgers, Solutions Architect: Xylem Decision Intelligence Solutions & Assessment Services, Xylem Inc 


Jeremy Llewellyn, CEO, Blue Gold Technology 

Thursday 18th April




MC: Edward James, Director of Content and Analysis, Meed


10:35 - 11:15 | Panel: Decarbonising food-water networks in desert countries

Decarbonising food systems is imperative if the world is to meet its 1.5 degree C target. Equally, countries must ensure they have food security, particularly those that are water stressed. This panel will explore the processes and technologies that are improving desert farming, and the implications this will have for reduced water use. How do hot, arid countries balance water use/reuse with the need for food security?


Moderator: Sherif Hosny, CEO, Mishkat Agtech 


Yazen Al Kodmani,
 General Manager, Emirates Bio Farm


Muhammad Umer Rabbani,
 Agriculture Engineer, Al Ghurair Group

Alberto José López, Biosystems Engineer – Controlled Environment Agriculture Consultant, Agritecture
 


Seta Tutundjian, Founder & CEO, Thriving Solutions 
 


11:10 - 11:50 | Panel: Reflecting the true cost of agriwater: Water consumption demand response

Agriculture accounts for 70% of water consumption in the region, placing greater focus on improved use and decarbonisation of the sector. What is the best water type use - recycled, desalinated, groundwater - by farmers and how can it be better monitored and controlled? If agriculture is 70% of water use, what additional attention and efforts should be in place to cut or change its use?

Moderator: Dr. Uday Kumar Nutakki, Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering / Director (R&D), American University of Ras Al Khaimah


Sherif Hosny, CEO, Mishkat Agtech


Ryan Lefers,
 Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Red Sea

Dr. Khalil Ammar, Program Leader, Sustainable Natural Resources Management, International Center for Biosaline Agriculture


Dr. Aftab Alam, Lead Scientist, Silal
 


Nada Abubakr, Middle East Lead, Global Water Practice, Ricardo 
 


11:50 - 12:05 | Presentation: Harnessing innovation for sustainable water management in arid regions

Dr. Abdul Aziz Niane, Country Manager and Arabian Peninsula Regional Program Coordinator/Seed Scientist, International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA-UAE)   


12:05 - 12:30 | Fireside talk: Balancing food security of supply versus cost of production

Food security is imperative for a nation, but in water-stressed, desert climates the cost of production can be high. This talk will consider the challenges and opportunities around food security, particularly where raw materials are included, and ask how these can be effectively balanced, so that nutrition and security are high, but costs and emissions are well managed.


Moderator: Samantha Kayruz, Strategy & Sustainability Impact Director, Goumbook


Mira El Ghaziri, Managing Director, HealthyPath


Hussein Al Hussein, Regional Manager - MENA, Farm To Plate


Vidya Shah, Chief Commercial Officer, Abu Dhabi Food Hub


12:30 - 13:00 | Case studies: Food-water digitalisation for improved efficiencies

Each presentation will focus on a different aspect of the food-water nexus, looking at how the use of advanced technologies can bring greater efficiencies to food production and security, particularly in desert climates.


12.30: Case Study 1: Ahmad Hammoud,
Head of Operations, GCC, Alesca Technologies 


12.45: Case Study 2: Saeed Alhassan, 
Professor, Khalifa University and Founder, Manhat


CLIX talks – Startups in the spotlight


13:00 | Susan Payne, CEO, Sustainable Planet

 


13:10 | Nisrine El Turky, Founder, IOTree

 


14:30 - 14:55 | Presentation: Water projects update

Get insight into the biggest water and wastewater projects either underway or planned in the GCC and wider Middle East. Hear which countries are investing in new infrastructure, project spend and when. 


Edward James, Director of Content and Analysis, Meed


14:55 - 15:35 | Panel: Future of finance for water projects  

What are the latest approaches to financing utility-scale water projects? Are the types of funding on offer changing and how? This panel will explore the types of finance available, if some projects are going to find it harder to secure funding in future, what green financing options are available to water schemes (and the conditions that come with it) and whether developers will start looking for alternative financing types.

Moderator: Alexander Malouf Peterson, Senior Manager, Concessions / PPP,
ITOCHU Middle East


Tahir Afridi,
 Head of Projects & Fixed Assets - Finance, Etihad Water & Electricity


Vivek Narnoli, Manager, Commercial and Capital Structure, Generation, TAQA 
 


Robert Bryniak,
 CEO, Golden Sands Management


Ali Tahir Jaffery, VP/Director, Standard Chartered Bank


Jonathan Scott Keyes, Senior Manager, Sustainable Finance, HSBC  


15:35 - 15:50 | Case Study: Innovations in rain enhancement science: Transforming water security in arid regions

Alya Al Mazrouei, Director of the UAE Research Programme for Rain Enhancement Science, UAE National Center of Meteorology 


15:50 - 16:30 | Panel: Smart water perspectives for liveable cities

In water-scarce regions, governments are expected to meet rising demand in urban environments. It means planners need to think about not just how future buildings will use water, but those that already exist as well. This session will discuss innovation, technology solutions and potential regulation to ensure that future cities use water efficiently and effectively.


Moderator: Robert Bryniak, CEO, Golden Sands Management 
 

Eng. Wafa Al Mashehari, Water Efficiency Programs Senior Specialist,
Abu Dhabi Department of Energy
 


Edurne Gil de San Vicente, Program Director, Water Alliance UAE 
 


Arnaud Delamare, Partner, Oliver Wyman
 

Laure Russier - Bècle, Regional Director for Water & Energy, Marine & Port, Nuclear and Marine Environment, Egis