A cooperation of national and international companies has been established to jointly develop the Zakito District Cooling system. This consortium consists of Curaçaose Wegenbouw Maatschappij (the Curaçao division of Janssen de Jong Group, The Netherlands), Ecopower International (Curaçao), Deerns (The Netherlands), Civil Engineering Caribbean (Curaçao) and DEVCCO (Sweden). These companies are known for their experience in the development of large-scale district cooling, energy, infrastructure and deep seawater pipeline projects throughout the world.
The Zakito District Cooling system can connect the Hilton hotel, Curacao Marriott Beach Resort, WTCC, Clarion hotel, Piscadera Residence, Corendon Beach Resort, Curaçao Medical Center, Courtyard by Marriott, Sentro Mediko Otrabanda and the Renaissance Hotel on this network which will provide them with a sustainable, reliable and cheaper alternative for the cooling of their buildings. The goal of this project is to connect centralized buildings between Renaissance and Hilton, including the hospital and possibly the Sambil Mall (“the Zakito Area”) that need to be cooled. In the future this project can also provide their services to the airport and the datacenter. More than 70% of the capacity has already been committed to the project. Taking into account the approval of permits and financial closure, construction of the Zakito District Cooling system is planned to start in the second half of 2019. The construction is expected to take approximately 18 to 24 months.
This project shall generate a substantial amount of jobs during execution:
- Approximately 100 employees during construction.
- 5-10 employees during operations.
- The Zakito District Cooling system will make it possible to develop the deep seawater industry, which is expected to provide approximately 500-600 middle and higher-level jobs with an estimated $ 100 million economic contribution to Curaçao.
District cooling is suitable for developments with large air conditioning demands. District cooling is generated centrally and is often based on natural cooling from bottom water of lakes, ground waters, rivers, the sea or conversion of waste heat/bio energy to cooling through absorption technology. It is also possible to include conventional chillers, heat pumps and storage. The cold water is usually distributed to the customers via a closed-loop, ground-laid distribution system. In each building the distributed cold water passes through an energy transfer station (ETS). This ETS is the interface between the distribution system and the customers’ conventional internal system providing the building with air conditioning, which remains the same. The centrally produced district cooling can reach up to 10 time’s higher energy-efficiency than local electricity-driven equipment.
Some general facts of this project are:
- It will reduce energy consumption for cooling by 95% resulting in:
- Reduction of oil imports and thus foreign currency expenditure.
- Seawater District Cooling (SWDC) will also save (if compared to average electricity tariffs) in cross subsidies by the other consumers to customers with the export tariff.
- Reduction of GHG emissions.
- SWDC will provide up to 70% of the total energy compared to conventional energy supply (electricity now used by the chillers).
- Furthermore, SWDC opens the Deep Seawater Industry possibilities for research, development and exploitation of aquaculture, agriculture and other spinoff activities.
Initiated by Zakito District Cooling, the Curacao Deep Seawater Industry Platform has been established which consists of public and private organizations (incl. universities). The goal of this platform is to analyze and determine the possibilities and value of deep seawater for Curaçao and implement a strategy for the subsequent deep seawater industry.
The waste water from the Zakito system can be used as input for the Deep Seawater Industry. Projects that can be developed in the future are related to Agriculture (greenhouses which can produce a large part of vegetables needed for Curaçao), Aquaculture (shrimp farming, lobster storage etc.), Micro Algae farms for the pharmaceutical industry, deep seawater desalination and R&D facilities like Ocean Thermal Energy conversion (OTEC).
*Above mentioned information is provided by Ecopower International.
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