Make Known Unknown (Blog 9)

Gaza Stripped of Water


As a consequence of continuing issues between Israel and Palestine, the Gaza strip is facing serious water supply issues. About 1.7 million Palestinians are without clean drinking water and are facing health issues caused by the contaminated water they consume. One prominent issue resulting from contaminated water is the increase of child mortality rates. Economic strains are also occurring as many families spend around 1/3 of their income on bottled drinking water. Even though the water is bottled, recent reports have stated that the water is not guaranteed to meet the World Health Organization’s bottled water standards.

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The underground water aquifer that the Palestinians are dependent on has become corroded and is need of repairs. The water currently passing through the aquifer is contaminated seawater due to unfiltered sewage that is allowed to flow into the Mediterranean Sea, which eventually makes its way into the aquifer. A UN report states that the aquifer will be certifiably unusable by 2016 unless action is taken and that the Gaza strip could be considered unlivable by 2020.

  The Union for the Mediterranean announced in May 2012 that they would be launching a project for desalination in Gaza to help solve the current water issues. The project is estimated to end in 2016, and will increase the amount of water produced from 55 million cubic meters to 110 million. This is still less than the current consumption of 170 million cubic meters per year. Many other projects have been placed in action but have not made desired progress due to funding issues.

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4 thoughts on “Gaza Stripped of Water

  1. This is absolutely an important issue that needs to be addressed. Clearly, it is encouraging to see that at least some steps are being taken, but as you stated it still is not nearly enough. I hope these projects are just the beginning of a trend of cleaning water.

  2. To be honest it seems that Palestine is being too lackluster in the action they are taking. If child mortality rates are increasing due to unhealthy water consumption, and consequently, poverty is increasing because bottled water is too expensive, actions that will come into play in 2016, 2 and a half years from now, doesn’t seem like an adequate or efficient plan. Clean water is essential and the health of people within the gaza strip is being damaged day by day. It seems the government needs to take more drastic and quicker action.

  3. Wow, I had no idea this was even a current issue- thank you for sharing! It’s so interesting how every country/region is tackling their own issues with natural resources. I am happy to see that a project will finally be launched into action. It is so frustrating when people in need do no receive the proper help and support due to funding problems, and unfortunately this is usually the name of the game. (Also great title!)

  4. Usually all we hear is that the Palestinians and Israelis hate each other, or there have been attacks, and so on. The extreme hardships of average Palestinians surely contributes to the problem, yet it is usually reported as only a religious and political conflict. Moreover, Israelis are only a few feet, literally, from these areas. Where do THEY get their water?

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