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What Happened To The Great-Man-Made River That Gaddafi Built In Libya?

According to HPL magazine, Libya’s ex-president Muammar Gaddafi built the Great Man-Made River that delivered fresh water to more than 90% of Libyans, and provided water for farm irrigation, making Libya self-sufficient in food production.

A massive network of underground pipes that brought fresh water from underground aquifers to the Libyan cities was built. The GMR was funded almost entirely out of oil sales revenue and pipes were manufactured locally. The project was a fantastic water delivery system that changed the lives of Libyans all across the country.

Muammar Gaddafi irrigated 155,000 hectares of agricultural land and gave free farm machinery and farm inputs to any person who want to start farming. The country was able to produce a variety of food that was enough to feed its population.


On July 22nd, 2011, U.S. warplanes bombed the Brega pipeline production plant. NATO said the building had been used for weapons storage by pro-Gaddafi troops.

The Hassanna system that supplies 60% of the water consumed in the whole country was destroyed and put out of service. With the chaos resulting from the ongoing civil war, the infrastructure is under severe strain, threatening supplies of water to 6.3 million people.

Water production and distribution infrastructure have been called for protection by international organizations. Top government officials stand powerless as facilities are vandalized by warring fighting militants.

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Muammar Gaddafi