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Breakbulk April 2018

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14 The Journal of Commerce | April 2018 www.joc.com Breakbulk & Project Cargo include facilities at Carlsbad and Santa Barbara, California, and Tianjin, China. Ziv Shor, vice president of proj- ects at IDE, disagrees with critics who argue that desalination is too expensive to meet the fresh water needs of more than a handful of countries where rainfall is scarce and there are no reliably rushing rivers to harness via hydropower. reverse osmosis, a conventional desalination technology that uses a semi-permeable membrane to remove pollutants. Since 1965, IDE has completed more than 400 water treatment plants, mainly desalination plants, in more than 40 countries worldwide, including Canada, Chile, Australia, and the US. IDE's recent major plants FEW NATURAL DISASTERS have been as devastating as Hurricane Maria, the Category 5 storm that hit Puerto Rico last September and caused widespread death and destruc- tion before fading from the headlines. Six months after the storm, work continues to lurch forward on repair and rebuilding of electrical grids and basic infrastructure. However, funding and lo- IDE Technologies completed the water treatment in Santa Barbara, California. DE Technologies Just the basics Puerto Rico's project shipments target relief and repair, not much infrastructure improvement By Alan F. Field gistics constraints have dimmed prospects for a surge in project cargo shipments. Initial post-storm shipments focused on basic relief supplies — food, water, and other necessities, and shipments to rebuild damaged electrical systems. US-flag carriers in the Jones Act domestic trades quickly deployed additional vessels to carry shipments to the island, only to struggle to move them inland amid trucker shortages and damaged roads. Those shipments have tapered off, and attention is turning toward infrastructure improvements that would require large project cargo movements. But with one- fourth of the island's residents still lacking electrical power, long-term improvements still take a back seat to rebuilding efforts. "Some of those people who have been without power are at the point of despera- tion," said Wally Gonzalez, director of gov- ernment operations at Crowley Maritime's logistics division. "We now refer to the history of Puerto Rico in two periods — life before the storm, and life after the storm." Since the storm, Crowley has de- livered more than 6,500 containers of goods related to relief efforts led by the Not every IDE plant is focused on producing drinking water. Last year, IDE announced that it was partnering with Taiwan's Formo- sa Petrochemical Corp. to build a desalination plant that will produce high-quality water for industrial ap- plications. Previous projects include supplying high-quality boiler feed water and potable water to Indian conglomerate Reliance for its oil refinery in the state of Gujarat. Although desalination plants are costly and take years to build, they provide reliable water supply, Shor said. "It is not just an issue of costs, but of water scarcity. If you have a drought, you don't have to worry about access to water," he said. US-based Poseidon Water has built desalination plants in Califor- nia and is developing them in Flori- da. Other players in the desalination market include Cadagua (Spain), Degremont Technologies (Canada), Doosan Heavy Industries (Korea), Hitachi Zosen (Japan), Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (Japan), Wabag (India), and Wetico (Saudi Arabia). Wabag has engineered the largest desalination plant in Oman, and Doosan has engineered such global projects as the Yanbu Phase 3 plant in Saudi Arabia. Mitsubishi recently engi- neered a desalination plant at Rabigh, on Saudi Arabia's Red Sea coast, sched- uled for completion this year.

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