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News Egypt removes crops grown with sewage water

Crops grown with untreated sewage water will be removed, according to a decision by Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources

The decision specifically cited areas south of Helwan, 10th of Ramadan City and fields near the Arab Abu Sa'ed drainage station as known offenders.

Farmers in 6th of October have also been found to use drainage from Abu Rawash wastewater plant to grow fruits and vegetables such as bananas, corn, spinach and molokhia, which has been distributed in the main wholesale markets of Cairo and Shubra el-Kheima.

The ministry has ordered that farmers themselves will pay for the removal of their crops to discourage them from continuing to use wastewater. The farmers contend, however that they have no other option.

"There isn't any source for clean water," farmers told the Egyptian Independent Newspaper Al Masry Al Youm.

Documents show that the Fayoum Company for Sugar Industries has contracted with farmers to buy 500 feddans of beets, although it is irrigated from the untreated drainage of Kom Umbo canal in Upper Egypt. A representative from the company confirmed this report.

"Farmers had to use drainage water for they haven't any other source of pure water," said representative Khaled Abdullah, adding that the sugar industry guarantees its products were from any harmful microbes.

Minister Abaza has ordered committees to be formed to supervise farms and set specific rules that prohibit using untreated water in future.

One source working in the irrigation sector said that the Egyptian Public Authority for Drainage Projects (EPADP) under the ministry is responsible for overseeing drainage related to crops.

The EPADP was established in 1973 for "controlling and preventing waterlogging and salinity which threaten crop production in Egypt," a European Commission website states. Abdel Fattah Salman, the head of the authority, would not take responsibility for the problem, however.

"It’s the irrigation sector's responsibility," Salman said.

Contact information n/a
News type Inbrief
File link http://news.egypt.com/en/200908116935/news/-egypt-news/egypt-removes-crops-grown-with-sewage-water.html
Source of information Egypt News
Keyword(s) sewage water, crops
Subject(s) INFRASTRUCTURES , POLICY-WATER POLICY AND WATER MANAGEMENT , PREVENTION AND NUISANCES POLLUTION , RISKS AND CLIMATOLOGY , WATER DEMAND , WATER QUALITY
Relation http://www.emwis.net/countries/fol749974/country769281
Geographical coverage Egypt
News date 02/09/2009
Working language(s) ENGLISH
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