The al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine is a living example of investing the Karbala desert and turning its sands into green oases through its pioneering project "Saqi farms". This is a large and strategic project adopted by the Department of Engineering Projects, which aims to combat desertification and drought which affected the country in general and Karbala in particular, and to contribute to the increase of green spaces and food security by planting a number of agricultural crops, trees, and fruits.
The head of the Engineering Projects Department at the al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine, Eng. Diaa Majeed Al-Sa'egh, stated: "The project "Saqi farms" is one of the most important projects adopted by the al-Abbas's (p) holy shrine, through which we achieved a number of objectives, most importantly the provision of water reservoirs depending on the groundwater that can be used in the event of any emergency or any water crisis, which indicators started to show year after year by drilling 50 wells, while investing the rest of the area for cultivation of palm trees and field crops such as wheat and barley, so we were able in a short period of time thanks to our technical and competent staff in this field to transform a barren desert to green lawns. "
The most important specifications and characteristics of the project are:
- The total area of the project is currently (10 thousand) acres, equivalent to (25.000.000) square meters.
- The area was cultivated with palm and wheat crop.
- The number of cultivated palms are 8,442 palm trees and 35 varieties of the finest types of dates.
- Watering is done by groundwater through 50 wells, which are used as water reservoirs and also for watering.
"The project, which is a prelude to additional projects and areas, aims to:
First: Investment of desert agricultural land and development of agricultural reality in Karbala.
Second: farms will serve as natural bumpers for wind and dust storms.
Third: the opportunity to employ workers to care for these crops.
Fourth: To contribute to the local market supply of good and rare types of dates and field crops.
Fifth: Employing agricultural resources and expertise and putting them in their proper field.
Sixth: Utilizing the surplus of wells.
Seventh: The possibility of planting other trees such as citrus trees and others.
Eighth: Introducing modern agricultural techniques and mechanisms using local and international expertise.
Ninth: Making this farm a source of rare species of palm."