Israel’s got what Jordan needs

Israel’s energy ministry announced on Tuesday (26 September) it’s finalising a trilateral energy-for-water deal with the UAE and Jordan.

The plan (‘Project Prosperity’) emerged out of COP26 in 2021, and has two parts:

  • 🟢 Prosperity Green: Israel will receive clean energy from a UAE-funded solar facility in Jordan, and
  • 🔵 Prosperity Blue: Jordan will receive 200 billion litres of desalinated water from Israel each year.

Intrigue’s take: Sometimes geopolitics is complicated. In this case, it’s kinda simple: people need water. Jordan doesn’t have much (it’s the second most water-scarce country on Earth); and Israel produces 20% more water than it needs.

So no matter how frustrated Jordan is with this Israeli government, and no matter how frustrated Jordanians are with this deal, Jordan is pushing ahead. It needs to.

Sometimes water drives conflict. For Israel and its neighbours, it seems to be driving cooperation right now.

Also worth noting:

  • The energy ministry said it expects to formally sign the agreement at COP28 in Dubai in November.
  • Jordan is currently moving to build a major desalination plant at its only port city, Aqaba, that’s expected to be operational by 2028.
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