The Jordanian ministry of water and irrigation has completed 92% of the Disi Water Conveyance Project and the pipelines will start pumping about 100 million cubic meters of water per year starting April 2013, a ministry spokesperson told Zawya.
"The project, estimated to cost USD 1 billion, was awarded to GAMA Enerji, which is implementing it with the help of 25 companies, 22 of which are local contractors," Omar Salameh said.
Mohamed Abu Taha, chairman of the Committee on Water and Environment in the Jordanian Engineers Association, told Zawya the project "will not solve but will go a long way to alleviating" an estimated annual shortfall of 400 million cubic meters of water in the kingdom.
A growing population has resulted in severe water scarcity in Jordan, where most people receive water for a few hours on one day of the week. Per capita water consumption in Jordan is 150 cubic meters per year, one of the lowest in the world. Saudi Arabia, for example has an annual per capita consumption of 850 cubic meters and the global average is 500 cubic meters, according to World Bank data.
The project, estimated to cost USD 1 billion, was awarded to GAMA Enerji, which is implementing it with the help of 25 companies, 22 of which are local contractors
The water transmission project being implemented will extend the pipeline from the Disi area in the south of Jordan to the capital, Amman, via storage tanks and pumping stations, according to information on the ministry of water and irrigation's website. Fifty-five production wells will supply water to the pipeline.
The government owns 22% of the project; 10% is shared between Agence Francaise de Developpement and European Investment Bank by way of sovereign loans; and the rest, 68%, is owned by the GAMA, which is the build-operate-transfer partner.
Abu Taha believes that a more effective way to resolve the kingdom's water problems would be to start desalination operations on the Red Sea; implement the canal link between the Red Sea and the Dead Sea; and start drilling in the eastern parts of the country.