Publications Details
Publications Details

Back

Title: DEMAND FOR AND INTEREST IN DECENTRALISED WASTEWATER TREATMENT AND RE-USE: AN EMPIRICAL ANALYSIS OF STAKEHOLDER VIEWS

Author: Nele Lienhoop and Ines Dombrowsky

Year: 2009

Publisher: European Water Resources Association (EWRA)

Description:

Decentralised wastewater treatment technology and local re-use of treated wastewater is one of the most promising ways to tackle water scarcity problems in water scarce countries, such as Jordan, in the future. However, in the past, it has proved very difficult to implement appropriate technologies for wastewater reuse
due to institutional barriers and public opposition. In this paper, the focus is directed away from technical aspects of wastewater treatment and re-use (WWT&R) towards investigating the possibilities and impediments of implementing decentralised solutions from a social perspective. The overall aim is to assess the perceived demand for and views towards WWT&R among different stakeholders. Investigating the social side of WWT implementation is considered to be important in order to engage relevant stakeholders in the decision-making
process, and take their concerns and views into account in the decision-making process. A case study was carried out in the Jordanian part of the Lower Jordan River Basin taking different stakeholder groups that would be involved in the decision-making process into account (e.g. government officials responsible for wastewater at different levels of administration, representatives of municipalities, and end-users). This enabled us to investigate views and perceptions regarding decentralised treatment plants and re-use from different perspectives. As such it
helped to find out in what respects there is convergence and in what aspects there is divergence of views. Data was collected by means of qualitative face-toface interviews with government officials and municipality councils, and focus groups with end-users in the villages. Our findings confirm that there is urgent demand for treated wastewater in Jordan. Overall, stakeholders were more positive than negative towards decentralised WWT&R. It was perceived that WWT&R would solve many of the problems Jordan currently faces, such as pollution of freshwater resources, social and health problems resulting from overflowing cesspits and low income among farmers. Interviews and focus groups revealed two main obstacles towards the introduction of decentralised
WWT&R: 1) financing of the plant, and 2) a lacking sense of responsibility among municipality councils and residents.