Egyptians Plant Forrest In Middle Of Desert And Use Recycled Wastewater To Maintain It
For those of us who live comfortably in first world countries, the idea of not having your basic survival needs met can feel unfathomable. When getting a clean glass of water is as simple as going into your kitchen and turning on the faucet, it's hard to think about what life would be like without simple access to potable drinking water.
Tragically, a lack of clean water is a reality for many people throughout the world. This hardship occurs frequently in desert areas where natural water sources are hard to come by and where the climate is naturally dry and arid.
However, not all desert areas begin as deserts. Some deserts originate through a process called desertification, where fertile and moist land becomes a desert over time. While this can sometimes happen naturally, many times it's the result of man's interference and improper agricultural practices.
In Egypt, fertile land that's hospitable to trees and plants can be hard to find. Hence, it's a tragedy when any part of their already-minimal fertile land areas undergo desertification. However, just as man can sometimes cause desertification, he can sometimes be the driving force that corrects the problem.
The Serapium Forest may only be 500 acres large, but it's quickly becoming an important place for climate researchers and those committed to sustainable agricultural practices. Scientists and agricultural specialists were able to create a lush forest by using purified wastewater to rehydrate the soil and reverse the effects of manmade desertification.
The recycled sewage water comes from the nearby city of Ismailia, traveling to the forest through underground pipes. While the idea of hydrating soil with sewage might sound a tad gross, the traces of human waste found in this recycled water is actually highly beneficial for the soil. Even after undergoing a purification process, the water still contains phosphorous and nitrogen, two of the earth's most potent fertilizers.
This technology is now being introduced to other countries, including the Sahel region in the Sahara Desert in Africa. By creating fertile land, agricultural scientists aren't only creating new forests. Instead, they're creating the potential for new crops and vegetation, which could be life-saving in countries where food shortages are a major cause for concern.
Show this story to anyone who's been concerned about climate change recently. Remember, no matter how bleak things might seem, there's always hope if mankind is willing to come together to fix the problems we've created.