Following recent revelations that chemicals dumped in landfills maybe disintegrating into toxic cocktails, it’s great to hear that Jordan has finalized an eco-map which will monitor industrial pollution in the country. Funded by USAID, the project has mapped all the chemicals plants in Jordan in an effort to monitor the industry and hold polluting plants to account. Environment ministry figures estimate the amount of hazardous waste generated annually by industries at 23,000 tonnes.
The eco-map has already indicated that the central region, which comprises of Amman, Zarqa, Balqa and Madaba, generates 68% of solid chemical waste. And that shouldn’t come as a surprise as the central region is home to 188 plants- five of which are categorised as high risk to the environment whist 147 are medium risk. Most of the plants in the central region are located in the country’s capital city of Amman and produce chemicals products such as detergent and paint.
Another worrying trend to emerge from the map is that whilst the southern region of Jordan is home to only eight chemical plants, these produce 31.5% of the country’s chemical waste. The plants based in southern cities such as Karak, Maan, Tafileh and Aqaba produce mainly paint and fertilizers. Two of the plants were categorised as high risk with the remaining six falling under the medium risk category.
In the north of the country, there are 16 chemical plants producing paint, fertilizers and pesticides – fourteen of these are medium risk to the environment whilst two have been deemed low risk. The northern region produces just 0.7 percent of chemical waste.
As well as providing a clearer picture of the main areas to monitor (which will help inspectors keep an eye on any offenders and in turn limit pollution), it is hoped that the eco-map will encourage industries to become more conscientious about the pollution they create. The government will be targeting offenders under a campaign titled ‘Who Pollutes, Pays’ and the fines will be channelled back into the Environment Protection Fund.
: Image via Victoria Reay/Flickr.
:: Jordan Times
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