Unlocking the potential of sludge as a resource in Jordan

Project description

Title: Sustainable Sludge Management in Jordan
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

Sludge drying beds. Copyright: SSM_Image


In Jordan, more than 105,000 tonnes of dried sewage sludge are produced in 29 wastewater treatment plants annually, and the volume is expected to increase to 139,000 tonnes by 2035. Most of the sludge is either stored on site or transported to unsuitable landfills which negatively impacts the quality of surrounding water sources and causes high greenhouse gas emissions. These practices also waste both energy and material resources and lead to high disposal costs.

Up to now, sludge has mainly been used for limited agricultural purposes and for biogas production. Yet the raw material has a much greater potential.


Sustainable sludge management solutions in Jordan are improving the conditions and standards for the use of sewage sludge products.


The project is improving the economic and ecological sustainability of sludge management by deploying upcycling solutions such as pyrolysis and pelleting. These processes make it possible to use the sludge as an alternative fuel, industrial raw material or compost additive.

The project promotes the economically efficient and sustainable use of sludge by improving the marketability of new sludge products. It also encourages private sector participation, develops distribution channels on national and international markets, and boosts the generation of income.

Together with local stakeholders, the project fosters an enabling environment for the use of sludge products. It also works to create the legal foundations to produce and use treated sludge, mobilises international know-how and runs awareness-raising campaigns.

The concept of sustainable sludge management is applied at the three locations that offer the highest economic and ecological feasibility. The project supports the design and operation of test facilities to obtain information on most the efficient operation settings and to develop recommendations for the standardisation of sewage sludge products.

Last update: October 2022

Additional information