17 January, 2023
Professor Peng Wang, an environmental scientist and engineer at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), has been honored with the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Water Award for research that uses renewable energy to produce clean drinking water.
The award is given by Suqia UAE, a United Arab Emirates entity under the umbrella of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives foundation, for projects with sustainable solutions to water scarcity. The award focuses on new technologies that "produce, distribute, store, monitor, desalinate and purify water using renewable energy."
"I have always been passionate about using renewable energy to help solve water issues," Wang said. "I started working on water related issues during my PhD, and I have been in the field of water for around 17 years. Water is essential to everyone, yet there are still more than 800 million people in the world who don't have stable and reliable access to clean drinking water on daily basis. This is one of the reasons why I have been working on water related research topics."
Wang received the award in the category of Distinguished Researcher. At present, he is working to enhance the ways in which solar energy can be leveraged in developing inexpensive and low-carbon-footprint technologies for clean water production that are suitable for off-grid communities and those with low to medium populations.
Resultantly, much of his time at KAUST is spent in the University's Water Desalination and Reuse Center, a facility that supports him in achieving his wider goals.
"Our world has an ambitious plan to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030," Wang said. "SDG 6 is equitable water and sanitation for all, meaning leaving no one behind. We hope that our technologies can facilitate the achievement of SDGs by 2030."