Four years ago, I wrote an article questioning whether Jordan had enough water to handle the influx of Syrian refugees fleeing the civil war. Today, Jordan has taken a number of steps to address this problem.
Jordan is a water scarce country, and was already facing water resource challenges before the refugee crisis began. Annual per capita water availability in Jordan is 123.4 m3, placing it in the category of absolute water scarcity (below 500 m3/person/year).
Since 2011, when the civil war in Syria started, Jordan has become home to 655,833 Syrian refugees. 141,318 of those refugees live in designated camps, while another 514,515 live in urban areas, such as Amman and Al-Zarqaa. As the Jordanian government has noted, the population increase has “placed additional strain on local services and infrastructure, some of which were previously deficient in quality, or inadequate in capacity, to meet the needs of the local pre-crisis population.”