Egypt is one of the richest Arab states in black sand: IDSC report



Tue, 10 Jan 2023 - 05:23 GMT


Tue, 10 Jan 2023 - 05:23 GMT

Black Sand - file

Black Sand - file

CAIRO - 10 January 2023: The Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC) affiliated with the Egyptian Cabinet issued a new publication titled "Black Sands...a national wealth that Egypt is rediscovering,” which defines black sands its economic significance and historical development of its investments in Egypt. 


The report further highlights figures and facts related to Egypt’s wealth of black sands, their whereabouts, and the state’s efforts to make the best use of them. 



What is the Black Sand?


Black Sand is called after its color, because it contains the minerals “magnetite” and “ilmenite”, which represent the two major components of this type of sand. The black sand is known as radioactive sand because it contains some radioactive minerals such as "monazite" and "zircon".


The IDSC report referred to the multiplicity of definitions that refer to the concept of "black sand", which agree in their entirety that it is a type of sand deposits that were formed since earlier geological times as a result of the processes of transporting clastic sediments from rocks and plateaus that were carried by the river waters on their journey to the estuary area on the northern coasts. 


The report indicated that there is a difference in the concentration of heavy metals in the black sand. There is a dark-colored type, which ranges between 70% and 90% of heavy metals. There is another gray type that contains no more than 40% of heavy metals. Of the many types of black sand, the most common is the black sand of volcanic minerals, which is spread - globally - off the coasts of volcanic islands, the most prominent of which are; Hawaii, the Canary Islands, and the Aleutian Islands.


These types of black sand also include a group of rocks and minerals, most notably; Basalt rocks, andesite, and volcanic glass are black in color, and these sands are heavier than normal, light-colored sand, and they are more likely to absorb heat from sunlight, due to the high “iron oxides” in their components, especially “black iron oxide” that covers the surface exterior of most metals.



How Black sand was formed in Egypt


Regarding Egypt, the Information and Decision Support Center indicated that the black sands were formed in it as a result of clastic sediments transported by the waters of the Nile River from the rocks and plateaus in eastern and central Africa - where the headwaters of the Nile River - to the estuary area off the northern coast of Egypt. As the water dumps its load of these sediments due to the cessation of the flow of the river water when it meets the waters of the Mediterranean Sea.


Black sand spreads along Egypt’s northern coast, starting from the city of Rashid to Rafah, with a length of 400 km. Egypt also has 11 black sand sites that have 8 types of heavy metals.



Economic benefit


The expected return for Egypt from one of these sites is more than 255 million pounds annually. The geological reserve of black sand in Egypt is estimated at about 1.3 billion cubic meters, distributed over four main regions in the governorates of "Beheira, Damietta, Kafr El-Sheikh, and North Sinai."


The report referred to the economic importance of black sand, the most prominent of which was the entry of strategic minerals that black sand contains into many economic industries such as "zircon, monazite, magnetite, rutile, ilmenite, and garnet". 


In this context, a number of prominent economic industries can be listed. It includes black sand, which is “the manufacture of aircraft structures, cars, missiles, submarines, spacecraft, prosthetic devices, the manufacture of petroleum pipelines, nuclear radiation materials, armored and military vehicles, railroad tracks, the manufacture of ceramics and tiles, sanding materials, high-tech floors, and the manufacture of crystal and glass, sports equipment and cosmetics.”


Black sand beaches are a distinct destination for medical tourism for individuals around the world because they contain important minerals such as sulfur, magnesium, calcium, sodium and potassium, whether for the purpose of recovering from some diseases or for the purpose of recreation and rest, and some countries have already established medical tourism products on their black sand beaches, out of respect The economic returns that you reap from this type of tourism such as "Japan", and the black sands in Hurghada is a distinguished destination for medical tourism in Egypt due to its proximity to the city of Safaga, which is rich in radioactive elements, which contributes to the treatment of many skin diseases as well as rheumatoid and rheumatic diseases.



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