The project deals with the reuse of treated wastewater (TW) for irrigation of selective crops, chosen according to the “project idea” of investigating plant species characterized by the prevailing local conditions (different vulnerability to chemical and microbiological contamination).
The current wastewater treatment includes different treatment processes in Morocco, Palestine, and Tunisia, includes activated sludge systems (ASS), membrane biological reactors (MBRs) and constructed wetland (CWs). The TWs will be used for the irrigation of model plants in field-scale and/or microcosms and/or in pots, with cultivations irrigated with freshwater (FW) as controls. Chemical and microbiological contamination will be monitored along complete agricultural production chain (i.e. TW, soil, and food) in order to evaluate the efficacy of WWTPs and assess the potential impacts of reclaimed water use in Palestine and Morocco.
Through this project, we will validate the wastewater treatment technology that is suitable for our geographical context for the reuse in agriculture and economic study of farmer ability to pay for irrigation by TW. On the other hand, an economic study of hydroretents commercialization to farmers and agriculture companies will be considered. Impactful research results of this project shall provide the knowledge and best practices to support and develop large‐and small-scale farmers led irrigation systems with hydrogel at affordable prices, while being locally accessible and environmentally friendly.