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Atlas of Jordan

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Myriam Ababsa

Chapter one - Constraints and Resources

Over Exploited Water Resources

Myriam Ababsa

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Groundwater

1This refers to available renewable groundwater resources (using safe extraction methods), estimated at 260 Mm3 per year for water strata that have been examined to date in all twelve basins. Quantities of available non-renewable groundwater were estimated at 118 Mm3 over a period of 100 years. These sources are found in the Disi-Mudawwara area and the Shadiya area in the Jafr Basin (fig. I.14).

Figure 1.14 — Jordan Water Sources in 2008.

Figure 1.14 — Jordan Water Sources in 2008.

Figure I.15— Flow Rate (Mm3/y).

Figure I.15— Flow Rate (Mm3/y).

Surface Water

2This refers to rivers, streams, valleys and winter flood water. Surface water quantities are estimated at 800 to 850 Mm3, a quarter of which is provided by the Yarmuk River Basin (230 Mm3 annually). The rest is in other basins across the country. Surface water is plentiful in the north and west of Jordan and scarce in the south and east (table I.2, table I.3, fig. I.15 and fig. I.16).

Non-Traditional Water

3This refers to treated water from waste treatment plants. Quantities were estimated at 32 Mm3 in 1989, 60 Mm3 in 1995 and 70 Mm3 in 2005 and are expected to reach 200 Mm3 in 2020. Farmers in the Jordan Valley operate private desalinisation plants to treat brackish groundwater for irrigation.

Water Resources

4Average annual rainfall is about 8 billion cubic metres, most of which evaporates. The remainder flows into rivers and other catchments or seeps into the ground to replenish large underground aquifers of fossil water that can be tapped with wells. Dam capacity was 1.91 Mm3 in 2005.

5Jordan is considered to be one of the world’s 10 poorest countries in water resources, whereas its population growth rate is about 2.9% (1998-2002), the 9th highest in the world (GTZ 2007). “The available renewable water resources are dropping drastically to an annual per capita share of 160 m3 in recent years, compared to 3,600 m3/cap/a in 1946.” (GTZ 2007, p. 13). While Jordan is currently suffering from a decrease in domestic per capita share reaching 86 litres/capita/day in 2001, this trend is expected to continue if no additional resources are developed. Jordan is striving not only to maintain domestic consumption at its current levels, but also to boost it to internationally accepted standards, at 150 l/c/d. The Dead Sea is a salt lake located in the Rift Valley at the mouth of the Jordan River and the end of several wadis. It is bordered by Jordan to the east and Israel and the Palestinian territories to the west. The Dead Sea is the lowest point on the Earth’s surface and the world’s deepest salt lake. It is the second saltiest body of water in the world (after Lake Asal in Djibouti). Its water is extremely saline (31.5%), very dense and its chemical composition is unique. This exceptional natural area is endangered by competing uses of its basin: for agriculture, industry and tourism.

Table I.2 — Resource Availability in Jordan for the Years 2005 - 2020.

Year

Additional Resources

Baseflow

Ground-water

Dam Safe Yield1

Non-Conventional Water2

Total

2005

343.6

157.1

259.1

224.8

34.3

1018.9

2010

511.2

144.1

259.1

259.9

69.3

1243.7

2015

453.9

144.1

259.1

274.4

88.6

1220.1

2020

455.9

132.5

259.1

300.9

101.2

1249.6

1. Including treated watewater discharged to wadis

2. Locally available treated wastewater

GTZ Water Master Plan 2004.

Table I.3 — Surface Water Basins in Jordan.

No

Surface Water Basin

Basin Code

Catchment Area (km2)

Average Annual Rainfall (mm/year)

Basin/Area

Basin Name

1

Dead Sea Basin

Jordan River Subbasin

 

Yarmouk

AD

1,426

280

2

Amman-Zarqa

 

AL

3,739

220

3

Jordan Valley

 

AB

780

270

4

Jordan Valley Rift Side Wadis

North

AE, AF, AG

AH, AJ,AK

946

490

5

South

AM, AN, AP

736

370

6

Dead Sea Subbasin

Central Basins

Mujib

CD

6,727

180

7

Hasa

CF

2,603

130

8

Dead Sea Rift Side Wadis

C

1,508

240

9

North Wadi Araba

D

2,953

180

10

Eastern Desert Basin

Azraq

F

12,400

85

11

Hammad

H

18,047

85

12

Sirhan

J

15,733

45

13

Jafr

G

12,363

45

14

Southern Basins

South Wadi Araba

E

3,742

75

15

Southern Desert

K

6,296

15

Total

90,000

100

Note: Areas are within the Jordanian Territory. GTZ Water Master Plan 2004.

Source: Rainfall-Runoff Model, Years 1937/38 – 2002/03

Figure I.16 — Jordan Main Water Basins.

Figure I.16 — Jordan Main Water Basins.

Table des illustrations

Titre Figure 1.14 — Jordan Water Sources in 2008.
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifpo/docannexe/image/4866/img-1.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 56k
Titre Figure I.15— Flow Rate (Mm3/y).
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifpo/docannexe/image/4866/img-2.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 280k
Titre Figure I.16 — Jordan Main Water Basins.
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifpo/docannexe/image/4866/img-3.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 204k

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