Tripoli considers extending Great Man-Made River project

22 August 2008
Libya is considering a further extension to its Great Man-Made River project to significantly increase capacity.

A source at the Great Man-Made River Authority (GMMRA) tells MEED the extension, if approved, will link a wellfield in Sarir Qattusah in the west of the country to the Hassouna-Jefara portion of the project, which conveys water from the Jebel Hassouna wellfield to Tripoli on the north coast.

The General Water Authority is carrying out a study of the propo-sals that it will submit to GMMRA within 12 months. The proposed capacity is 500,000 cubic metres a day (cm/d) of water.

Work is continuing on other parts of the river, such as the Ghadames-Zwara-Azzawiya section where water should start flowing by 1 September. The local Al-Nahr Company is the contractor.

Work also continues on an extension to the Sarir-Sirte-Tazerbo-Benghazi system, which will link a wellfield at Kufra to Tazerbo. Turkey’s Tekfen is the contractor. The pipe will have capacity of 1.68 million cm/d. A total of 314 wells will be developed at Kufra.

GMMRA has awarded contracts for the drilling of the wells to Egypt’s General Company for Research and Ground Water Drilling (Regwa) and the Libyan-Canadian Company (Lican). The authority is also evaluating two bids for the wellfield network from Tekfen and Al Nahr Company.

The Great Man-Made River project was launched in 1984. It will eventually transfer more than 6.5 million cm/d of water from the Sahara to cities on the country’s north coast.

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