Jordan approves water project worth US$980 million

deadsea  Marco ZanferrarThe Dead Sea is shrinking around one meter every year amid drought and pumping for mineral extraction. (Image source: Marco Zanferrar/Flickr)Jordan has approved a US$980mn project to desalinate water from the Red Sea for drinking water needs

According to the team behind the project, it will also play a role in replenishing the retreating Dead Sea.

Jordan Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour said that the desalination plant would have a capacity of 100mn cubic metres a year in Wadi Araba and a pipeline from the plant will discharge the brine into the Dead Sea.

A Dow Jones reports said that the country has been identified as one of the world's most water-poor nations, suffering chronic drinking water shortages. The Dead Sea is shrinking around one meter every year amid drought and pumping for mineral extraction and agricultural needs.

Ensour said, “The Jordanian government has decided to go ahead with the project after conducting thorough geological, geographical, environmental and economic studies.”

Jordan will also swap desalinated water produced by the project with drinking water produced by Israel from Lake Tiberias, also known as the Sea of Galilee.

The project will be financed partially by the government, while between US$300mn and US$400mn will be secured from grants, the minister of water and irrigation Hazem Nasser said in a statement.

Last month, Jordan inaugurated the US$1bn water supply project transporting around 120,000 cubic meters a day from the Disi aquifer in southern Jordan to the capital Amman and nearby provinces.


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