Unlocking the potential of using sludge as a resource in Jordan

Project description

Title: Sustainable Sludge Management
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Jordan
Lead executing agency: Water Authority of Jordan (WAJ)
Overall term: 2020 to 2024



In Jordan, 150,000 cubic metres of semi-dry sewage sludge (60 per cent dry solids) and 357,000 cubic metres of liquid sludge (two per cent) are produced in 31 wastewater treatment plants annually. Most of these quantities are either stored onsite or transported to unsanitary landfills. These practices negatively affect the quality of water sources and cause high greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, this approach wastes both energy and material resources, with high disposal costs ranging between two and eight Euros per cubic metre. Sludge has mainly been used for limited agricultural purposes and for biogas production to date – both of which do not utilise the full potential value of sludge.


Sustainable sludge management solutions are being applied in Jordan resulting in better operational conditions and standards for the improved use of sludge products.


The project aims to improve the economic and ecological sustainability of sludge management in Jordan by deploying technology-based upcycling solutions such as pyrolysis and pelleting. This leads to an increase in the value of treated sludge as an alternative fuel, industrial raw material or compost additive.

The project promotes the economic efficiency and sustainability of sludge by improving the marketability of new sludge products. This also involves other activities such as encouraging private sector participation, developing distribution channels within national and international markets and generating revenues.

Fostering an enabling environment for the use of sludge products is based on joint decisions and actions by local actors. The project also works to create the legal foundations to produce and use treated sludge, mobilise international know-how, and it runs positive awareness campaigns.

Last update: September 2021