Red Sea–Dead Sea Canal
The Red Sea–Dead Sea Conduit (Canal) (sometimes called the Two Seas Canal) is a proposed conduit (pipes and brine canal) which would run from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea. It will provide potable water to Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority, bring sea water to stabilise the Dead Sea water level and generate electricity to support the energy needs of the project. This proposal has a role in plans to create institutions for economic cooperation between Israelis, Jordanians and Palestinians, in the Dead Sea and through the Peace Valley plan.
The water level in Dead Sea is shrinking at a rate of more than one metre per year, and its surface area has shrunk by about 30% in the last 20 years. This is largely due to the diversion of about 90% of the water volume in the Jordan River. In the early 1960s, the river moved 1.5 billion cubic metres of water every year from the Sea of Galilee to the Dead Sea. But dams, canals and pumping stations built by Israel, Jordan and Syria to divert water for crops and drinking have reduced the flow to about 100 million cubic metres a year (MCM/yr) (mainly brackish water and sewage). The decline of the Dead Sea level is creating major environmental problems in: the creation of sink holes that endanger structures, plantations and roads; receding sea shores and the creation of ugly mud planes; and other effects on the environment and the flora and fauna of the region. The World Bank Study estimated the intangibles benefits of the removal of the environmental problems associated with the decline in the sea water level as about US$ 31 billion.
Other routes for a conduit (canal and tunnel) for the same objectives of the Red - Dead Conduit, the Mediterranean–Dead Sea Canal, has been proposed in Israel in the 1980s, but was discarded due to high investment costs and the reliance on the energy objective. Recently the idea has been revived. Another route (pipeline, tunnel and canal) was proposed from The Mediterranean to the Dead Sea through the Beit Shean and the Jordan Valley. Other alternatives to address the Jordan River and the Dead Sea problems have been suggested among them the renewal of the flow of water in the Jordan River through the use of desalination and changes in the water policies of the riparian of the Jordan River.
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