Two information days were organised in Algeria (Oran) in May 2015 in view of enhancing awareness of farmers and strengthening the capacity of technicians about a safer use of treated wastewater in irrigation and agriculture. The events were jointly planned and carried out with the National Office of Irrigation and Drainage (ONID) and with the support of the Ministry of Water Resources – Directorate of Studies and Hydraulic Facilities.
The Information days involved a total of 92 participants on Day 1 (13 May 2015, dedicated to information and awareness of farmers) and of 67 on day 2 (14 May 2015 dedicated to trainers, managers and decision makers). All participants came from different sectors related to the reuse of treated wastewater and particularly: farmers from the already irrigated area of Hannaya-Tlemcen and of M'leta area-Oran (planned); trainers and technicians from the agricultural and water resources sectors; representatives of the Ministries in charge of Water Resources, Agriculture and Rural Development, Public Health, Commerce and the National partner in the campaign ONID with all its regional offices.
Day 1 was mainly dedicated to explain the regulatory texts and social aspects related to the re-use of treated wastewater in irrigation and the measures to prevent health risks and to avoid contamination of any kind on people, animals and the environment when using this water. The different experiences of treated wastewater re-use in Algeria and the Mediterranean were also presented and discussed. Sessions were also organized to explain by different specialists the content and scope of the brochure prepared in the framework of the campaign and distributed to participants so as to facilitate the implementation of health risks prevention measures related to the reuse of treated wastewater.
Day 2 focused on the different training and capacity building initiatives and programmes undertaken by National specialists in relation to the reuse of treated wastewater, the various techniques for treating wastewater carried out by the National Sanitation Office and measures to be taken up and downstream of treatment stations to achieve a good water quality and avoid contamination for users and the environment. Beside the conventional presentations, exchanges between experts and participants were held under form of debates. Participants had the opportunity to present evidence of treated wastewater re-use in Algeria and the Mediterranean, including the representative of the association of irrigators of the perimeter of Hannaya-Tlemcen who explained the results obtained by all irrigators during the last 5 years. The manual produced in the framework of the campaign was explained and distributed to all participants in this session.
A similar campaign has been organised in Tunisia in January 2015.