Jordan Faces Unprecedented Water Poverty: PM

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AMMAN, Dec 16 (IANS): Jordanian Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh said that the country is facing unprecedented water poverty.

When addressing the lower house of the country’s Parliament, he said the annual per capita share of water in Jordan is nearly 90 cubic metres, while the global water poverty line is 500 cubic metres, Xinhua news agency reported citing state media.

“If the situation continues to deteriorate, the annual per capita share will drop to 60 cubic metres by 2040,” he said, citing scientific reports.

The Prime Minister said the kingdom has discussed the feasibility of a joint water-energy project with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel, which would supply Jordan with 200 million cubic metres of water annually.

He also said Jordan would accelerate the implementation of the national water carrier project that conveys desalinated seawater from the Gulf of Aqaba to other regions across the kingdom.

According to the UN, Jordan is the second most water scarce country in the world.

Jordan’s annual renewable water resources are less than 100 cubic metres per person, significantly below the threshold of 500 cubic metres per person which defines severe water scarcity.

While more than 98 per cent of the population has access to an improved water source, only 93 per cent access a safely-managed source and 86 per cent to a piped network.

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