The Beit She'an Valley in northern Israel has witnessed a miracle of sorts. A small rainwater collection plan in this valley has expanded into a massive network of chennels, carrying some 9,000 cu m of water an hour. The 200-sq- km flatland records an annual rainfall of 300 mm. The valley sits on top of the Judean Hills aquifer, the country's largest underground reservoir which releases its waters into 30 large and 280 small springs. These springs watered the valley during the summer. But in the winter, they overflowed into nearby wadis a(dry river beds) displacing large chunks of topsoil. The water and soil eventually emptied into the Jordan river which flowed uselessly into the Dead Sea. But a project was initiated in 1990 to channelise the valley's winter overflow into large irrigation reservoirs. Today, the project has 40 reservoirs and 100 fish ponds, filled by a network of 50 km of channels and 500 pumps of between 50 and 300 horse power.
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