Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Greening the Desert

Israel is the leader in water conservation efforts due to its successful works in recycling high percentage of sewage water for reuse in agricultural sector and for curbing the intrusion of seawater. I have just watched some videos in Youtube which show how farmers in Israel turn the desert of Negev into vegetable and fruit gardens. Israeli farmers create drip irrigation technology to supply water to every crop that they have planted in the arid land. Rainwater is insufficient to them. To support their farmers, the government of Israel treat their sewage water from big cities in the country and pump it to the farming lands. Israel is the only state in the world that has successfully recycled almost all of its waste water. Today 75% of sewage water has been recycled. But Israel plans to increase the percentage up to 90%. This is the highest among all developed countries. Because the recycled water cannot be used for drinking water, it is fed into farmlands to produce fruits, vegetables and flowers that are now their main agricultural produce. These commodities are exported to European market. To supply drinking water, Israel built 39 desalination plants along its 230 km coastline. Hadera is the location of the largest and the most advanced desalination plant in the world with pumping capacity of 23,000 cubic meters of water per hour.
Israel also builds water reservoirs in the desert to collect water during rainy season so that it can be reused for farming, drinking and other industrial needs. Today, Israel farmers share their success with their "cousins" - the Palestinian farmers to help them increase their agricultural production both for domestic consumption and export market. In recent years, students and farmers from such developing countries as Kenya and India visit Israel to learn their water engineering technology. 
Israel is not the only country in the world that is covered with desert. Most of the Middle East, some parts of Africa, China, Australia and the United States have got arid lands and desserts. However, Israel is the leader in water engineering technology that is now seen as an example and inspiration for other countries that are interested in improving their agricultural sector and the quantity and quality of their drinking water. Although more than half of its land is dessert, the Israeli is very successful in greening lands.
This tiny country whose size is approximately equivalent to New Jersey also develops alternative energy generated from solar photovoltaic and concentrated panels and wind farms. These are positive achievements that can inspire the world. by Charles Roring