Hydroponic agriculture could help preserve scarce water in Jordan

Jordan is the country with the third-highest water insecurity in the world, after Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. By 2030, 40% of all groundwater is expected to be depleted, as it is being used at a much greater rate than it can be recharged.

The answer to a fast approaching crisis might be in a greenhouse in Madaba province (a 40-minute drive from Amman) where hundreds of tomato plants are lifted half a meter from the ground in a 10 meter (32-foot) high, multi-span structure that takes up an area of 7,200 square meters (77,500 square feet).

“Hydroponics is a high-tech farming technique, where soil is replaced by tuff, peat moss or, as in this case, by coconut fiber supports,” Doaa al-Amayreh, an agriculture engineer with the Jordan Hydroponic Agriculture and Employment Development Project, told Al-Monitor.

The three-year project (2018-2020) is supported by the Foreign Ministry of the Netherlands with 12 million euros (around $13.4 million). The project aims at increasing water efficiency and profitability for farmers. It is being implemented by the Jordanian firm, Eco Consult, which is in charge of technical support and training.

Read more: www.al-monitor.com (Daniela Sala)


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