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Workers’ housing cause of Al Hassan Industrial Estate wastewater leaks

By Hana Namrouqa - Oct 18,2018 - Last updated at Oct 18,2018

AMMAN — Authorities on Thursday said that housing units of factory workers in Al Hassan Industrial Estate in Ramtha are the source of wastewater that has been seeping into the vicinity of the industrial park.

Huge amounts of wastewater have been streaming around the Al Hassan Industrial Estate, according to the Ministry of Environment, which indicated that the Royal Rangers and the ministry’s teams tracked down the source of the leaking wastewater.

“An investigation by the ministry and the Rangers indicated that the wastewater has been seeping from the housing units of workers in factories at Al Hassan Industrial Estate. The housing units were not linked to the sewage network and it is an infringement,” Isa Shboul, the Environment Ministry’s spokesperson and assistant secretary general, said on Thursday.

Al Hassan Industrial Estate is one of the 18 Qualified Industrial Zones (QIZ) across Jordan, which started in 1996 as the result of a US Congress decision aimed at fostering economic relations between Jordan, Israel and Egypt.

According to figures from the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the factories in the QIZ employ over 50,000 migrant labourers from Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal, who produce textiles for export to US brands and reside in the factories’ housing units.

“Legal action has been taken against the factories in question in coordination with Irbid’s governor. The factories were instructed to rectify the violation and dispose of the wastewater in a healthy and environmental friendly manner,” Shboul underlined.

In addition, the ministry demanded owners of the factories to link the housing units to the sewage network that is connected to Al Hassan Industrial Estate’s wastewater treatment plant.

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