The phosphate industry is a major contributor to the economy of some Medit. countries (Morocco, Jordan, Tunisia, etc). Large volumes of water are required by the mining industry from areas where water resources are scarce or limited. Water scarcity may be worsened by a degradation of the water quality after phosphate processing. The pressure on water is liable to hamper the development of phosphate industry and results in competition with other water reliant economic sectors such as agriculture or tourism. The El'Maa project meets this strategic need: to reduce tensions on water resources (quantity and quality) at regional scale; to consolidate the sustainable development of the phosphate mining industry. El'Maa will focus in priority on the interface betwee n the mining and agricultural sectors, given the economic and social importance of the latter sector. The general objective of El'Maa is to provide the phosphate industry and the water managers with a methodology for the integrated management of water reso urces in the zone of influence of the mine sites and supply technological innovations to reduce the pressure on water resources, in mining (e.g. use of municipal wastewater in phosphate process) and agricultural practices (e.g. use of phosphate process wat er). This methodology will integrate a customised Decision Support System with a realistic representation of water management system, integrating technical, economic, social and environmental dimensions. El'Maa DSS will serve i) to identify and rank the fa ctors controlling water management and sharing; ii) to optimize the water consumption and re-use; iii) to measure the potential impact of changes in the mining and agricultural practices related to technological innovation or evolutions in the institution al or regulatory framework. It is accordingly possible for the phosphate industry as well as the institutional players to rank the actions to be initiated and hence to propose action plans.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project
Cité Mahrajene Tunis