Tala Bay, Jordan

Time period :


Implementing Institution/ Organization:


Funded by :



1) functioning hotel and resort with green spaces that attracts many visitors.
2) Using recycled water for landscaping saves the use of fresh water.
3) enhancing the potential of date palm agribusinesses in the Jericho district. The availability of a new source of water that can be used for landscaping purposes by the project and other nearby buildings or hotels.
4) Investment projects like big hotels and resorts can be constructed in areas without wastewater collection systems already in place.

Methodology (approach)

1) Data about the Tala Bay WWTP and its water reuse were requested directly from the plant manager who was sent a template to complete. The plant manager returned it after three weeks with the requested information.
2) The consultant reviewed the data and compiled it as needed into the project template. Where data were missing, the consultant made an informed judgment based on personal experience and by comparing information from other similar plants.

Study Results

The Tala Bay WWTP started operations in 2005 serving the Tala Bay Resort. Initially, it had a capacity of 300 m3 /day, which increased to 1,000 m3 /day when Aquatreat Water and Wastewater Engineering Company constructed a new Tala Bay WWTP (WAJ 2020). The plant is located on the offshore side of the resort, where the water is pumped through lifting stations to the main trunk line, which has a diameter of 250 mm and is 8 km long. There are four lifting stations inside the resort compound and another four lifting stations outside the compound (Figure 6.2). The plant uses a modified activated sludge treatment system and collected wastewater goes through three stages of treatment: primary (grit removal and sedimentation tanks), secondary (biological activated sludge and nitrogen removal) and tertiary (polishing ponds followed by chlorination disinfection) (Figure 6.3). The sludge is then dried and transported for disposal. Recycled water from the Tala Bay WWTP is then returned to the resort where it is stored in an on-site tank with a capacity of 8,000 m3 . The water is pumped from the storage tank to be reused in different ways around the resort, for example, to the sprinkler systems to irrigate the green areas in the resort or to the drip network to irrigate the trees. Some of the recycled water is pumped to nearby hotels such as the Mövenpick Resort and Spa. Currently, 500–1,000 m3 /day of the recycled water is used for irrigation, with the rate varying depending on occupancy in the hotels and resorts. One of the main challenges facing the use of recycled water for irrigating the landscaped areas is increased levels of salinity in the water, which is affecting the drip irrigation system. This increase is mainly due to hotel water uses including laundry and restaurants (JPTD 2022). The water reuse project brings significant economic savings for the Tala Bay Hotels and Resorts complex. Fresh water is expensive for commercial and industrial entities, costing an average of USD 2.5-4/m3 with a saving of between USD 400/day and USD 2,500/day through the use of recycled water to irrigate their trees and green landscaped areas. Excess water is also sold to other nearby hotels, mainly the nearby Mövenpick Resort and Spa, providing a further source of income. In addition, water reuse is improving the environment by expanding the green areas around the hotels and the Tala Bay WWTP continues to function properly with no pollution problems reported, benefiting both human and environmental health. The Tala Bay WWTP has a design capacity of just 1,000 m3 /day, which means that its socioeconomic impact is quite small. It has four staff members who are usually local residents of Aqaba. Private investments in the tourism and industry sector in Jordan need to include the construction of wastewater treatment plants to service their projects as part of their investment plans. Inside cities, development projects can usually connect to existing sewerage networks so that wastewater collection and treatment are covered in water bills. For areas that do not have a sewerage network like Aqaba city’s southern beach, the hotels have to construct their own treatment plant. The construction of a wastewater treatment plant for a stand-alone project, in this case, Tala Bay Resorts, is not based on a financial and economic analysis but is rather considered as any other facility belonging to a hotel and resort complex. The complex needs to be able to collect and dispose of its sewage, which means that any associated costs need to be considered as part of the project cost. However, the reuse of the recycled water produced by the plant represents an added value as it saves the cost of purchasing fresh water for landscaping, which costs USD 2.5–4/m3 for hotels in Aqaba. In this context, the Tala Bay WWTP provides a good model that could be replicated and scaled in other hotels and resorts.


Significant savings in the cost and use of fresh water Partial operations and maintenance cost recovery through sales of recycled water to other hotels Visible environmental benefits: Increasing green areas Improving public health

An increase in oil percentage in wastewater affects plant efficiency Although local experise in running the plant is available, there is limited expertise in advanced process techniques

A new source of water for landscaping purposes in the hotel vicinity and other nearby hotels Reduced demand for municipal water for landscaping uses

In case of plant failure, the untreated water will be discharged to the sea Odor problem if the plant’s treatment efficiency drops

Lessons learned

1) Local community acceptance of investment projects requires potential work opportunities for the local communities.

2) Coordination with various governmental organizations was essential for the success of this project.

References (resources) Found is the case study

the Jordan Projects for Tourism Development website (, which provides information about the history of the construction of Tala Bay Hotels and Resorts and the Water Authority of Jordan’s Annual Report 2020

ADC (Aqaba Development Company). 2022. Tala Bay. ADC. Available at details.aspx?pro_id=1049 (accessed on June 23, 2022).

AWC (Aqaba Water Company). 2022.

ASEZA (Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority). 2001. Environment Regulation No. (21). Available at (accessed on June 23, 2022).

JPTD (Jordan Projects for Tourism Development). 2022. Discover Jordan’s best kept secret. Available at (accessed on June 22, 2022).

UN Women (United Nations Women); REACH. 2018. Women’s participation in the agricultural sector, rural institutions and community life. Amman, Jordan: UN Women. 112p. Available at https://jordan. (accessed on July 25, 2022).

USAID (United States Agency for International Development). 2018. The status of Jordanian women in the water sector. Jordan: The Jordan Water Management Initiative. Available at (accessed on July 25, 2022).

WAJ (Water Authority of Jordan). 2020. Annual report 2020. Jordan. Water Authority of Jordan (WAJ). Available at (accessed on July 25, 2022). (Available in Arabic).

WAJ. 2021. Water authority. The official site of the Jordanian e-government. Available at https://portal. try%20of%20 Water%20and%20Irrigation/Water%20Authority/ (accessed on June 23, 2022).


ADC: Aqaba Development Corporation
ASEZ: Aqaba Special Economic Zone
ASEZA: Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority
AWC: Aqaba Water Company
JPTD: Jordan Projects for Tourism Development
USAID: United States Agency for International Development
WAJ: Water Authority of Jordan
WWTP: Wastewater Treatment Plant