Middle East

UAE firm proposes towing icebergs home to help fight freshwater shortages

Coming over five weeks since April Fool’s Day, news reaches Splash of an Abu Dhabi firm that has come up with an incredible solution to fight persistent freshwater shortages in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The National Advisor Bureau Limited is proposing deploying a tug to take icebergs from Antarctica to the UAE to be used as drinking water.

The plan involves towing an iceberg from near Heard Island, one of a group Antarctic islands, up to the coast of Fujairah in the east of the UAE where it would then be turned into drinking water at a processing port.

The backers of the ambitious plan say the icebergs could also serve as a tourist draw card, not unlike Dubai’s ski resort housed in a shopping mall.

Up to 40% of the iceberg’s volume will be lost on the 10,000 km journey which is estimated to take one year.

A promotional video is carried below.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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