My (second) first story from Amman is published!
Story and photo by Anthony Savvides
AMMAN, Jordan – A 200-mile pipeline designed to bring water to the drought-ridden capital is finally making its way into Amman after almost three years of construction and millions of dollars invested in the project. If everything goes as planned, 2.5 million residents here will have access to continuously flowing water one year from now, in May 2013.
The Disi Water Conveyance Project, funded by the government and a number of outside sources including private investment firms, is 75 percent complete. When it’s done, residents of Amman will finally be able to use water without fear of depleting their weekly ration of 3 cubic meters, or about 750 gallons.
“I hope that the water will be an improved solution and the total capacity of the water will be increased,” said Bassam Saleh, the project’s director and an engineer at the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, which is an official branch of the government. “It will be supplied to the people, and continuously supplied 24/7, not like this current situation of the ration of [water delivery] one day per week.”
Jordan, located in the heart of the Middle East and bordering Israel, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Iraq, is the third-driest nation in the world. Its people have long suffered the realities of their geography. With almost no ground water reserves and more than 90 percent of the nation receiving fewer than 8 inches of annual precipitation, water is desperately scarce. In addition, neighboring Syria and Israel have built dams along the Yarmouk and Jordan rivers, respectively, in their countries, which in effect choke these water sources that once flowed onto this country’s soil.