EcoPeace/Friends of the Earth Middle East organized and led an ambassadors tour to the Jordan Valley on Saturday the 7th of June, 2014. The purpose of the tour was to bring attention to the problems facing the Valley including Solid Waste Management, Sanitation, Agriculture and Farming Practices. FoEME, in this regard has produced a regional master plan for the Lower Jordan River and identified a set of interventions that aim at advancing peace, prosperity and sustainability in the Lower Jordan River Valley.
The tour that was attended by a number of ambassadors and representatives from Association of Southeast Asian Nations including his Excellency Mr. Piriya Khempon from Thailand, her Excellency Ms., Olivia Palala from Philippines, representatives from the Indonesian Embassy along with the Brazilian Ambassadress Ms. Renate Stille and Ms., Elizabeth Hattingh Regional Environment, Science, Technology, and Health Officer for the Middle East and North Africa from the US Embassy. The visitors were introduced to the interventions needed to alleviate the environmental problems that face the Jordan Valley as a whole and the Jordan River in particular.
During their visit to the Mouth of the Jordan River, the participants were introduced to the challenges facing the river and their consequent effects on the Dead Sea. The Rivers waters and ecological system are in a steep decline due to pollution and over diversion as explained by Mr. Munqeth Mehyar FoEMEs Jordanian Director. The visitors then received elaborate explanations about the sanitation situation in the Jordan Valley by Mr., Qais Owais representing the Jordan Valley Authority and Mr. Mohammad Mderes from the Ministry of Environment. They were then escorted to Deir Allah Landfill where they saw firsthand the dangers posed by the landfill on ground water resources and the basic techniques used to separate waste.
The visitors afterwards had a short meeting with Deir Allah’s Mayor Mr. Khalifa Aldayat for a brief discussion about agriculture in the Jordan Valley and headed to Sharhabil Bin Hassneh ecological park where Mr. Abdul Rahman Sultan, Assistant Director briefed them about the history of the park and its importance as an environmental educational hub.
This post is contributed by Samar M. Salma, FoEMEs Media Officer at the Amman Office.