Water reuse for irrigation in Jordan: Perceptions of water quality among farmers
The reuse of treated wastewater (reclaimed water) for irrigation is a valuable strategy to maximise available water resources, but the often marginal quality of the water can present agricultural challenges. Semi-structured interviews were held with Jordanian farmers to explore how they perceive the quality of reclaimed water. Of the 11 farmers interviewed who irrigate with reclaimed water directly near treatment plants, 10 described reclaimed water either positively or neutrally. In contrast, 27 of the 39 farmers who use reclaimed water indirectly, after it is blended with fresh water, viewed the resource negatively, although 23 of the indirect reuse farmers also recognised the nutrient benefits. Farmer perception of reclaimed water may be a function of its quality, but consideration should also be given to farmers' capacity to manage the agricultural challenges associated with reclaimed water (salinity, irrigation system damage, marketing of produce), their actual and perceived capacity to control where and when reclaimed water is used, and their capacity to influence the quality of the water delivered to the farm.
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