Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Israel, Jordan, UAE Officials Meet to Advance Water-for-Energy Deal

Israel’s Energy Minister Israel Katz met with Emirati, Jordanian, and US officials in Abu Dhabi on Monday to advance the trilateral water-for-energy deal, which is designed to ease the impact of climate change on both Israel and Jordan.

The deal, which was signed in November 2022, sees Jordan establish a 600-megawatt solar power capacity plant, constructed by an Emirati firm and with Emirati financing. Israel will purchase solar power from the new Jordan-based facility, and Jordan will purchase desalinated water from an Israeli site to be constructed along the Mediterranean coast. The deal sees Israel providing water-scarce Jordan with 200 million cubic meters of water.

The meeting in Abu Dhabi was hosted by UAE Minister of Technology and Industry Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber. In addition to Katz, the meeting was attended by Jordanian Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Saleh Ali Hamed al-Kharabsheh, Jordanian Environment Minister Muawieh Khalid Radaideh, Jordanian Water and Irrigation Minister Muhammad Jamil Musa al-Najjar, and senior adviser in the office of the Special American Presidential Envoy for Climate David Livingston.

A statement issued by the office of Katz after the meeting said that “the parties discussed the desired ways to promote the final stages of the ‘Prosperity’ regional initiative for the sale of 200 million cubic meters of desalinated seawater per year to Jordan, and the purchase of green electricity from a solar farm that the United Arab Emirates will build in Jordan. These discussions took place in preparation for the signing of binding agreements at the annual climate conference COP28 to be held at the end of the year in Dubai.”

The water-for-energy Prosperity Project was launched in 2021 as a byproduct of the Abraham Accords normalizing ties between Israel, Bahrain, the UAE, and Sudan. The deal aims to contribute to better relations between Israel and Jordan, as well as to help both countries address the challenges of climate change.

The meeting in Abu Dhabi was a positive step forward for the Prosperity Project. The parties involved discussed how to move the project forward and agreed to work together to finalize the details of the deal in time for COP28. The successful implementation of the Prosperity Project would be a major achievement for the Abraham Accords and would help to promote peace and prosperity in the Middle East

Aimen Jamil
Aimen Jamil's intellectual curiosity lies at the intersection of Middle East and Pakistan Foreign Policy.

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