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Water treatment plant hopes to save Jordan River

December 24, 2009

The Jordan River

It is well known that the Jordan River has been one of Israel’s most polluted bodies of water for some time now, specifically the southern section next to Kibbutz Degania, Israel’s first Kibbutz, and many significant archaeological sights. Nevertheless, the Jordan Valley Regional Council and the Tiberias water corporation joined to work on a NIS 60 million water treatment plant which is supposed to supply 19 million cubic meters of water a year.

The Bitanya treatment plant is scheduled to open in about two years and will treat wastewater, salty springwater, and freshwater to be used for agriculture. It is the first step in saving the downriver section of the Jordan. At this point, the flow of sewage even violates the terms of the peace agreement with Jordan, which states that water must be usable for agriculture.

Since there are many historic sites in the region, preparations have been made to restore them and combine them with a larger tourist project, so hopefully things will go as planned and the Jordan River will only get cleaner.

For more information on the Bitanya treatment plant, please check out this article from Haaretz.

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 24, 2010 12:57 pm

    Waters that are used for drinking, manufacturing, farming, and other purposes by residences (toilets, baths, showers, kitchens, sinks), institutions, hospitals, commercial and industrial establishments are degraded in quality as a result of the introduction of contaminating constituents. Organic wastes, suspended solids, bacteria, nitrates, and phosphates are pollutants that commonly must be removed.

    To make wastewater acceptable for reuse or for returning to the environment, the concentration of contaminants must be reduced to a non-harmful level, usually a standard prescribed by the Environmental Protection Agency.

    Sewage can be treated close to where it is created (in septic tanks, bio-filters or aerobic treatment systems), or collected and transported via a network of pipes and pump stations to a municipal treatment plant.

    Sewage treatment plant, or domestic wastewater treatment, is the process of removing contaminants from wastewater and household sewage, both runoff (effluents) and domestic. The task of designing and constructing facilities for treating wastewaters falls to environmental engineers. They employ a variety of engineered and natural systems to get the job done, using physical, chemical, biological, and sludge treatment methods. Its objective is to produce a waste stream (or treated effluent) and a solid waste or sludge suitable for discharge or reuse back into the environment. This material is often inadvertently contaminated with many toxic organic and inorganic compounds.

    The features of wastewater treatment systems are determined by (1) the nature of the municipal and industrial wastes that are conveyed to them by sewers, and (2) the amount of treatment required to preserve and/or improve the quality of the receiving bodies of water. Discharges from treatment plants usually are disposed by dilution in rivers, lakes, or estuaries. They also may be used for certain types of irrigation (such as golf courses), transported to lagoons where they are evaporated, or discharged through submarine (underwater) outfalls into the ocean. However, outflows from treatment works must meet effluent standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency to avoid polluting the bodies of water that receive them.

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