A step towards decentralized wastewater management in the Lower Jordan Rift Valley

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In order to address serious concerns over public health, water scarcity and groundwater pollution in Jordan, the expansion of decentralized wastewater treatment and reuse (DWWT&R) systems to small communities is one of the goals defined by the Jordan government in the “Water Strategy 2009–2022”. This paper evaluates the general potential of decentralized wastewater system solutions to be applied in a selected area of the Lower Jordan Rift Valley in Jordan. For the study area, the connection degree to sewer systems was calculated as 67% (5% in the rural sector and 75% in the urban sector). The annual wastewater production available for DWWT&R in the rural sector of the investigation area was calculated to be nearly 3.8 million m3 at the end of 2007. The future need of wastewater treatment and reuse facilities of the rural sector was estimated to be increasing by 0.11 million m3 year−1, with an overall potential of new treatment capacity of nearly 15,500 population equivalents (pe) year−1. The overall potential for implementing DWWT&R systems in the urban sector was estimated as nearly 25 million m3 of wastewater in 2007. The future need of wastewater treatment and reuse facilities required for the urban sector was estimated to be increasing at a rate of 0.12 million pe year−1. Together with the decision makers and the stakeholders, a potential map with three regions has been defined: Region 1 with existing central wastewater infrastructure, Region 2 with already planned central infrastructure and Region 3 with the highest potential for implementing DWWT&R systems.

Keywords: decentralized wastewater management, Jordan, rural sector, treatment potential, urban sector

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