Green Energy, at the request of the General Directorate of Water Resources of the Salvation Government, delivered electricity to the al-Ray power station located at Ayn al-Zarqa. According to the executive director of the company, Usama Abu Zayd, over 50 hours of maintenance work was carried out at the power station, with fixing underground cables, in order to be able to pump out 140 000 cubic meter of water to provide the agricultural lands in the Rouge plain.
Since it started providing electricity to the Idlib region last month, many private and public sectors are starting to benefit from its service. Amongst them are the farmers of the Rouge plain, west of Idlib, who are now able to plant new crops this year after water from Ayn al-Zarqa is drawn to their lands.
The Ayn al-Zarqa pumping station is located on the eastern edge of the Orontes River, next to the famous Ayn al-Zarqa spring, and south of the town of Darkush.
The pumping station which feeds the agricultural lands in the Rouge plain with water stopped working for almost ten years as a result of power being cut to the area by the regime and some of the pumps being stolen, but its infrastructure remained largely intact.
The station has importance in pumping water from the Orontes River and the Ayn al-Zarqa spring to the Rouge plain to irrigate 15 thousand hectares of lands in the region. The plain enjoys fertile soil suitable for the plantation of most summer and winter crops. It is considered an important food basket for large areas in the northwestern part of Syria.
One of the main reasons for the high prices of vegetables in Idlib province was the price of fuel. The farmers used to rely on fuel generators to pump water for irrigation. The Green Energy project in cooperation with the SSG in providing water to the region will have a positive impact on the farmers and in turn on the economy.
Mohamad Deeb Salam, head of the Bali’a Dam, said: “After 10 years of power outage, and low rain seasons, the Rouge plain became drylands, people just stopped farming. After the Ayn al-Zarqa water pumping station returned to service with electricity provided by Green Energy, farmers are now returning to agriculture”.