Safe to Drink: IAEA-Supported Water Treatment Unit to Make Aquifer Waters Potable in Jordan


In Jordan, where water scarcity is a matter of growing concern, a new groundwater treatment unit, developed with the support of the IAEA, will soon begin pumping high-quality drinking water to thousands of homes in Aqaba Governate at the country’s southern tip. The first of its kind in Jordan, the pilot treatment system works by removing naturally occurring radionuclides from groundwater, allowing the Water Authority of Jordan (WAJ) to leverage previously unused aquifers and reduce stress on existing sources of water.


Jordan is among the ten countries with lowest availability of freshwater per-capita in the world – due to its semi-arid climate, characterized by low precipitation rates and the result of its growing population. This situation is expected to worsen and, according to the World Health Organization’s Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean (WHO-EMRO), Jordan will enter a state of “extreme water poverty” by 2025 unless effective measures are taken.


One such measure is the exploitation of deeper, older groundwater resources, such as the Ram aquifer, which – surrounded by sandstone – holds vast amounts of high-quality fresh water, unlikely to show any anthropogenic contamination. However, sandstone tends to contain elevated concentrations of naturally occurring radionuclides, mainly radium, which can be dangerous to consumers.


Supported by the IAEA’s technical cooperation programme, isotope analysis specialists and waste technology specialists helped experts in Jordan to measure and monitor the concentration of radium in groundwater sampled from the Ram aquifer and to explore a number of options for the water’s treatment. 


Read more here.

Text Alignment: 
Text Alignment Ar: 
Web design Web design Jordan Foresite تطوير المواقع الإلكترونية الأردن