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Atlas of Jordan

Myriam Ababsa

Chapter ten - Jordan Mega Projects for Water, Energy and Transportation

Jordan’s Unique Approach: Mega Projects

Myriam Ababsa

Texte intégral

1During the 1960s the newly independent Arab countries were embarking on major hydraulic, road and energy projects with the support of the USSR (the Aswan Dam in Egypt and the Euphrates Project in Syria). Meanwhile, Jordan developed a major project with U.S. aid; the King Abdullah Canal, designed to provide agricultural work for tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees in the fertile Jordan River valley (fig. X.1). During the 1990s, the country developed ambitious initiatives in renewable energy (a 1 MW power plant using organic waste in Ruseifa, built in 1997) and in wastewater management, especially in the Jordan Valley and in Amman. At the time, the country’s growth was stimulated by cheap energy, since Iraq (which had a pipeline that passed through Jordan on its way to Haifa until 1948) sold its oil very cheaply to Jordan. This was reinforced when King Hussein supported Saddam Hussein in 1991. However, the invasion of Iraq in 2003 by troops from the US-led coalition temporarily stopped exports. In 2005, crude oil prices broke the previous record of $150 a barrel and 80% of the country’s power plants were converted to gas, imported from Egypt by pipeline. But in 2011, terrorist attacks against the Egyptian pipelines that pass through Israel led the government to revert to using oil in power plants. Oil is now imported from Saudi Arabia and Iraq through the port of Aqaba and convoys of trucks deliver it daily to service stations, causing additional pollution.

Figure X.1 — Main Jordanian Dams and Jordan Valley Authority Irrigation projects.

Figure X.1 — Main Jordanian Dams and Jordan Valley Authority Irrigation projects.

2Supported by the IMF and the World Bank (to which the country has provided guarantees by privatizing its telecommunications sector, its phosphate factories, water management and transport sector) since the mid 2000s Jordan has been able to plan megaprojects in the fields of water, energy and transport (table X.1), In 2010, a megaprojects department was created within the Prime Minister’s office to oversee tenders, private company investments in BOT contracts and to monitor work.

Table des illustrations

Titre Figure X.1 — Main Jordanian Dams and Jordan Valley Authority Irrigation projects.
Fichier image/jpeg, 336k
Titre Table X.1
Fichier image/jpeg, 95k

© Presses de l’Ifpo, 2013

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