Natural resources, energy and environment
Unlike many neighboring countries, Jordan is
almost completely lacking in oil and gas resources. The
country generally has its own natural resources with the
exception of phosphate and potash (potassium carbonate).
Jordan is one of the world's largest producers of
phosphate, which is used, among other things, in the
production of artificial fertilizers. The phosphate
reserves also contain some uranium. Pot ash, for the
production of soap and baking powder, is taken from the
Dead Sea. There are also small resources of copper,
manganese, gypsum and mineral salts.
Major exports by Jordan with a full list of the top products exported by the country. Includes trade value in U.S. dollars and the percentage for each product category.
One of Jordan's biggest problems is the large
shortage of water. Many water projects have been
discussed with neighboring countries over the years, but
the political unrest in the region has often been an
obstacle. In 2013, however, Jordan signed an agreement
with Israel and the Palestinian Authority to build an
18-mile-long pipe for desalinated water from a plant in
Aqaba. It could supply all three parties with drinking
water, but the realization looks distant.
To meet its energy needs, Jordan imports crude oil,
previously mostly from Iraq but since the beginning of
the Iraq war, mainly from Saudi Arabia. Jordan is one of
the Arab countries that favors when oil prices fall.
Through a pipeline to Aqaba, Egyptian natural gas has
also been received, but the political turmoil in Egypt
since the Arab Spring of 2011 has led to uncertain
deliveries and high prices. This, in turn, has led to
major losses for the national electricity company (Nepco).
In 2014, Jordan signed an agreement with Israel on
imports of gas from deposits off the Israeli coast. When
deliveries began at the turn of the year 2019/2020, the
Jordanian parliament voted against gas imports.
Abbreviationfinder: A popular acronym site in the world covering abbreviation for each country. For example, JO stands for Jordan. Visit itypeusa for more information about Jordan.
To make the country less dependent on imports and
varying energy prices, the government has tried to use
its own small oil and natural gas deposits. With the
help of international companies such as the oil company
Shell, new attempts have also been made to extract oil
from domestic oil shale, although this has previously
proved costly. They also invest in renewable energy such
as solar and wind power. In 2018, the Ministry of Energy
stated that 380 mosques and churches were equipped with
solar panels over the past five years.
With Russian help, a nuclear power plant will be
built in the desert north of Amman. The two reactors are
scheduled to be completed by 2021.
Electricity consumption has risen sharply in recent
years. Jordan is participating in a regional project to
link its electricity grid with neighboring countries in
order to avoid any electricity shortages in the future.
However, when the global corona crisis erupted in 2020,
Jordan decided to close all activities that were not
considered socially important, causing energy
consumption to collapse. For this reason, solar power
plants were disconnected from the electricity grid, but
the closure was expected to be short-lived.
FACTS - ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Energy use per person
1 103 kilo oil equivalents (2014)
Electricity consumption per person
2243 kilowatt hours, kWh (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions in total
26 450 thousand tonnes (2014)
Carbon dioxide emissions per inhabitant
3.0 tons (2014)
The share of energy from renewable sources
3.2 percent (2015)
Proposals for UN resolution are voted down
Jordan, as a member of the UN Security Council 2014-2015, is presenting a
motion for resolution on the end of Israel's occupation of Palestinian
territories and the establishment of a Palestinian state, on behalf of the
Palestinians and 22 Arab states, but the proposal is rejected.
Jordanian aircraft is shot down by IS
A Jordanian aircraft participating in an air strike against IS in Syria (see
September) is shot down and the pilot is captured by IS men.
Sentenced prisoners are executed
Eleven sentenced prisoners are executed by hanging, after the government
decided to re-execute the death sentences. This is the first time since 2006
that executions have been carried out.
Muslim leader arrested
Zaki Bani Irshid, the second highest leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in
Jordan, is arrested. Bani Irshid is accused of breaking the country's
anti-terror laws (which were sharpened in April). In a post on Facebook, Bani
Irshid criticized the United Arab Emirates for classifying the Muslim
Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.
Prison sentences against IS sympathizers
Five people are sentenced to imprisonment of between three and five years for
membership in the Islamic State and for propagating the group on the Internet.
In total, at least 130 people who sympathize with IS have been arrested since
Jordan joined the air strikes against IS mounts in Syria in September.
Jordan supports fight against IS
Jordan, along with other states in the region, promises to support the US
fight against IS (see July). The countries pledge to join the
military fight against IS and to stop recruits trying to get to IS via their
territory. The countries also undertake to stop money subsidies to IS.
Jordan later joins the US-led alliance that fights IS with air strikes.
Jordan participates in attack against IS positions in Syria.
Criticism from HRW
Human Rights Watch (HRW) accuses Jordan of sending back Palestinian refugees
who have entered Syria from the country. More than 100 Palestinians should have
been sent back. According to HRW, Palestinian refugees should also have been
stopped at the border when they tried to enter Syria.
Demonstration in support of Islamists
Protesters in the city of Maan in the south show their support for the
Islamic State (IS) extreme Islamist movement, which has taken control of large
parts of Iraq and Syria and has made itself known for a particularly brutal
regime in the areas controlled by the movement. Earlier in the year, Maan has
been the center of several riots and violent confrontations with security forces
that have been looking for suspected terrorists in the city. According to local
activists, ten people have died as a result of police violence since the
beginning of the year.
Suspected terrorist is released
Radical Muslim leader Abu Qatada is acquitted of charges of terrorism and
released from prison. Qatada, who was extradited from the UK in 2013, was
charged with supporting a group that planned to carry out attacks on Western and
Israeli targets in connection with the celebration of the millennium in Jordan.
Diplomatic conflict between Syria and Jordan
Syria's ambassador is expelled with immediate effect. The ambassador is
accused of insulting the Jordanian people and the country's leaders in several
statements. At the same time, Syrian TV states that Syria plans to expel a
Kidnapped ambassador released
Jordan's ambassador to Libya, Fawaz Aitan, who was kidnapped in April,
released unharmed and taken home. No details are reported about the release, and
it is unclear whether the negotiators have given in to the kidnappers' demand
that a Libyan militant Islamist be released in exchange for the ambassador.
A new law against terrorism is approved by Parliament
On April 22, Parliament approved amendments to the country's 2006
anti-terrorist law to prevent more Jordanians from joining Islamist groups. The
new additions criminalize, among other things, pronounced support for terrorist
groups on the Internet and in the media. Hundreds of Jordanians have so far
participated in the Syrian civil war, and the government has previously
expressed concern that the conflict in the neighboring country will spread.
Armored vehicles from Syria are destroyed by military
On April 16, Jordanian fighter aircraft destroys several camouflaged armored
vehicles that have crossed the border from Syria. The Syrian regime announces in
a statement that these are not vehicles from the Syrian army.
The ambassador to Libya is kidnapped
On April 15, Jordan's ambassador to Libya, Fawaz Aitan, is kidnapped by
masked men traveling in two passenger cars. The kidnappers shoot the embassy
vehicle and injure the driver. The Libyan authorities say that an investigation
into the kidnapping has been started.
Riots in refugee camps require death victims
One person is killed and several injured in riots breaking out in a Syrian
refugee camp near the border with Syria on April 4. Several riots have taken
place in refugee camps over the past year, mainly due to dissatisfaction with
living conditions. However, this is the first time the riots have demanded a