On June 3rd, 2016 the Minister of Agriculture of Tunisia, Mr. Saad Seddik visited and officially inaugurated the demo plot for the desalination of brackish waters for irrigation in Mahdia, at the irrigated perimeter of Gounat realized by ICU in partnership with the Minister of Agriculture in the framework of the ACCBAT project.
The event was attended by General Directors from the Ministry of Agriculture of Tunisia, Governors, project staff from the Ministry and ICU and all the farmers of the perimeter beneficiaries of the project.
ACCBAT (Adaptation to Climate Change through improved water demand management in irrigated agriculture by introduction of new technologies and best agricultural practices) is a strategic project launched by ICU in December 2012 funded by the European Union under the program ENPI CBC-Med 2007-2013.
Specifically, the ACCBAT project in Mahdia build a desalination unit able to reduce the amount of salt in water from 5.8gr/l to 0 for about 200m3 of water per day. The plot has been also equipped with a 600m3 water storage for the mix of desalinated water and brackish water. This water, with reduced salt concentration (about 1.5gr/l) will then be used by 60 farmers for the irrigation of greenhouses crop such as tomatoes and cucumbers avoiding the current and consistent soil degradation and limited revenues of farmers do to the limited kind of crops they can grow. The unit will also avoid the waste of fresh water for irrigation, a solution often used by farmers to avoid extreme salt concentration in soil.