Master of Science (MS)


Environmental Sciences

Document Type



Kuwait and the other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states have experienced rapid growth in population coupled with a rise in the standards of living and acceleration in social, agricultural, and industrial growths, which greatly increased the demand for water supplies. Due to the scarcity of water resources in the region, non-conventional water supplies such as seawater desalination are and have been the main water resource. Kuwait has so far been able to meet demand by using its access to both the sea and abundant oil needed in the desalination plants. The quantity of water consumed per capita in Kuwait is higher than in countries with abundant water resources. There are several reasons for such demand, but one of the main reasons is the fact that the price of water is heavily subsidized in Kuwait; consumers currently pay $0.60 USD/m3, while the cost of desalinated water production is currently is above $5 USD/m3 (based on 2007 oil prices). The main objective of this study is to evaluate the water price as a cost effective tool to reduce water over consumption by identifying the economic and the environmental benefits of water conservation using water models in the literature. Two scenarios were evaluated based on a 5-year (2008-2012) water plant using economic indicators (cost of fuels, cost of water projects), and environmental indicators (water production, CO2, NO2, and SO2 emissions). Scenario A was the current price schedule used in Kuwait (uniform rate of $0.6 USD/m3). Scenario B was the price proposal by Milutinovic ($1 USD/m3 price of water, after 150L/capita/ day allowance). A cost-effectiveness analysis was then used to determine the overall effectiveness of each scenario using the above indicators. The results of this study suggest that adopting scenario B will cut the water demand by 113.3 billion imperial gallons in 5 years. Thus, adopting scenario B would postpone the need for new water projects to the year 2020. Under scenario A, water demand would outstrip water production capacity by the year 2012. Implementing the new price schedule (Scenario B) starting in year 2008 will reduce energy consumption for water desalination by around 16.2%. This is equivalent to 4.32 million barrels of Crude Oil, 172 thousand barrels of Gas Oil, 10.12 million barrels of heavy fuel oil (HFO), and 21,421 million SCF of Natural gas. This translates into net fuel savings of 1.5 billion USDs and 16.2% emissions reduction in 5 years. Liquid fuel analysis suggests that HFO and crude oil emit 397 and 360 kg CO2/bbl, respectively. Also, HFO emits two times more NO2 and SO2 than crude oil. Emission factors were also calculated per unit of water produced, 12.81 kg/m3 of CO2, .044 kg/m3 of NO2, and .253 kg/m3 of SO2.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Portier, Ralph J.