Qatar has witnessed robust growth in treated wastewater used in agriculture both month-on-month and year-on-year this July as the country plans to develop 1.5mn sq m of different types of greenhouses in the next two years.
The rising reuse of treated wastewater in the farming sector comes amidst Qatar's plans to produce 40,000 tonnes of vegetables as part of measures to reduce the reliance on imports.
The country uses the most modern membrane ultra-filtration system that helps in the recycling of treated wastewater.
Qatar's treated wastewater stood at 24.32mn cubic metres out of 24.33mn cu m of wastewater received in July this year, said the figures released by the Planning and Statistics Authority.
The treated wastewater saw a 1.2% and 6.6% month-on-month and year-on-year respectively in the review period.
There has been a robust reuse of treated wastewater in agriculture, a sector that has received increased thrust and support from the government as part of the self-sustaining initiatives, especially after the country came under unjust economic and trade embargo.
The treated wastewater reused in agriculture increased by 10.5% and 5% on monthly and yearly basis respectively to 8.28mn cu m, which accounted for 34% of the total treated wastewater this July (compared to 31% in June 2020).
The growth in the re-usage of treated wastewater for agriculture hints at the hydrocarbons-rich country's green initiatives, a key parameter of sustainable development.
Agrico managing director Nasser Ahmed al-Khalaf recently said the agriculture sector in the country has a wide area for development and expansion, especially for local farms that want to further increase their production.
The treated wastewater reused for irrigation of green spaces saw a marginal 0.3% dip month-on-month to 8.89mn cu m, which accounted for 37% of the total treated wastewater. On a yearly basis, the reuse for irrigation of green spaces witnessed a 7.1% growth.
The treated wastewater reused in deep injection into aquifers registered 14.5% and 8.6% decline month-on-month and year-on-year to 5.19mn cu m, which accounted for 21% of the total treated wastewater in July 2020 against more than 25% the previous month.
The treated wastewater discharged into lagoons in July 2020 stood at 1.96mn cu m or 8% of the total treated wastewater reused against 6% in June 2020. Such discharge saw 25.9% increase month-on-month and more than doubled on a yearly basis.
There was no discharge of treated wastewater into sea in July 2020.
The PSA bulletin said the water produced grew 2% and 3.7% to 62.96mn cu m; while consumption rose 3.3% and 4.6% respectively to 61.99mn cu m in July 2020.
The Water Centre at the Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute, part of Hamad Bin Khalifa University, has been helping Qatar in tackling its water security challenges by conducting research, development and innovation to enhance every step of the water cycle in Qatar.