AJMAN // The Ajman Municipality and Planning Department, which is awaiting government funding for infrastructure projects, is calling upon residents to minimise water and electricity usage to help meet the rising demands in the emirate. Both Ajman and Sharjah have had regular water and electricity supply problems. The Federal Electricity and Water Authority (Fewa) cut off its supply to all commercial buildings in the Northern Emirates two years ago.
In addition to the Fewa supply, Ajman relies mostly on generators as it waits for its first coal-fired power plant, one that could start generating electricity by 2012. Ajman launched a two-month power conservation campaign yesterday under the guidance of Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, the chairman of the Ajman Municipality and Planning, and in co-operation with Fewa. Residents in Ajman are already facing a problem with salinated tap water.
"You cannot drink this water or even use it for cooking anything," said Ibrahim al Kathir, 35. "We rely on bottled water for cooking tea and food, which is very expensive." Last month Fewa signed a contract with a consortium of UAE-based Tecton Engineering and the Austrian company Aqua Engineering to build a Dh139 million (US$38 million) desalination plant in Al Zorah. The plant is expected to be completed in two years.