The National Programme for Safe Use of Treated Sewage Water for Afforestation
The promotion of a greener environment is one priority area where the Government of Egypt has been very actively involved through a number of relevant line ministries and competent organizations both governmental and non-governmental. Such activities aim at reducing the negative impacts of pollution and associated health hazards. Greening activities have been initiated and central nurseries have also been established. Moreover, tree planting activities and beautification activities are carried out in a number of cities and governorates.
And since the development of the necessary infrastructure for irrigation and water reuse is considered essential for ensuring the sustainability of any greening activity, continued efforts are being exerted in development of new innovative ideas for irrigation.
Within this context, Egypt is now witnessing a wide range of new projects aiming at expanding the green stretch in the desert by introducing forests plantation (man-made forests), making use of treated sewage water, to produce timber trees of the high economic value. This contributes to satisfying the local needs of Egypt in terms of wood and helps in recovering this vital resource. It also plays an important role in fixing sand dunes, combating drought and desertification, in protecting the soil from possible erosion and acts as windbreaks. Furthermore it preserves other natural resources such as water and biodiversity.
These projects, implemented by the Undersecretariat for Afforestation and Environment of the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation in cooperation with the Ministry of State for Environmental Affairs, include
forest plantations irrigated by treated sewage water and distributed in the following governorates:
Timber trees currently under plantation and irrigated by treated waste water in 2008
Plants discharge (thousands m3\day)
Areas under plantation (Feddan)
Source: Ministry of
Housing, Utilities and Urban Development
A wide variety of trees of high economic value have been planted. Such species comprise Khaya (African Mahogany), Eucalyptus and Malberries, which are growing in the southern area of the valley, and adapting to the climatic conditions of this region. Also, there are Cupressus, Pinus, Neem, Eucalyptus and some other species of Acacia planted along Cairo-Alexandria Desert Road, Ismailia and South Sinai to ensure attaining the best results.