23 September, 2021 Member article

ARE Member WaterKiosk Launches the Largest Solar Powered Water Desalination System in Kenya

16 September 2021 – One of the largest water desalination projects, and the first of its kind in Africa will be launched in Marsabit County on the 22nd of September 2021. It delivers over 11,000 litres of hygienic drinking water per hour, with a capacity of providing water to over 30,000 community members in a radius of 5km water points, which will be distributed through 24 fully automated water ATMs.

Bubisa WaterKiosk is 46 kilometers from Marsabit town and the main economic activities practiced there is pastoralism and running small scale businesses. The area experiences great difficulties in accessing hygienic drinking water amidst a harsh climate. For further information see the IDTechEx report on Desalination: Off Grid Zero Emission 2018-2028.

To meet the circular economy characteristics of the project, two hectares of saline water farming have been integrated, utilising the wastewater from the desalination machine. This is the best practice of a truly sustainable journey between the German company Boreal Light GmbH, WaterKiosk Africa and Cargo Human Care e.V.s, Caritas Germany and Pacida Kenya. The project implements water infrastructure in one of the most remote parts of the country and utilises 100% solar energy.

The entire project will contribute immensely to the supply of clean water and mitigate hunger through saline water farming. Using the waste water of the desalination machine will also create more job opportunities for the population living in Marsabit.

“Bubisa WaterKiosk is a unique role model for unprivileged poor-rural communities where water, electricity and food supply is a challenge. We believe many other parts of Africa may learn from the best practice of Bubisa for their future adaptation to climate change impacts,” says Dr Hamed Beheshti, CEO of Boreal Light GmbH.

Dr Thomas Berger, Board member Cargo Human Care e.V, adds: “The concept of producing clean and safe drinking water for a population with the help of a desalination plant will not only be a significant improvement in the health of the people in Bubisa but also improvement of the infrastructure of this village. This pilot project can contribute to enable people in other regions to have access to safe water.”

The Delegation of German Industry and Commerce for Eastern Africa is proud to have continuously assisted Boreal Light GmbH through participation in several of its projects and business delegations and is looking forward to further cooperation.