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Sewage collapse threatens health of Palestinians in Gaza

January 27, 2014 at 4:49 am

Palestinians in Gaza have a lot to contend with, especially since the war launched by the Israeli Occupiers just over a year ago. With the loss of more than 1,400 Palestinian lives, most of whom were women and children, the near total destruction of whatever little infrastructure that remained and the general pillaging of the territory, Palestinians are once again faced with the prospect of rebuilding their lives in the besieged Gaza Strip.

However, because of the ongoing Israeli blockade on essential materials, the Palestinians have not been able to carry out any reconstruction of their houses, hospitals, schools and the local infrastructure, including the power station and sewage treatment plants. Sewage disposal has become a huge problem all over Gaza, with leaks onto farmland and into nearby water sources leading to pollution and less fertile soil, which in turn has led to poor harvests. Sewage and waste material from cities and refugee camps with limited access to sewage treatment plants is ending up in water sources which lead to the beaches of Gaza and the sea. This has resulted in severe water pollution and the contamination of fish,  as well as a variety of acute and chronic water-borne diseases. Examples of soil and water pollution are seen in the picture gallery below.

Picture 1

Pools set up by the Municipality of Gaza to collect sewage, but these ponds sometimes leak waste water into nearby farmland and cause significant damage

Picture 2

 These ponds attract insects and mosquitoes posing a health risk to the local population

Picture 3

Damage to the farmland adjacent to the ponds, in particular damage to the soil


Picture 4

Damage to the farmland adjacent to the ponds, in particular damage to the soil

Picture 5

Scores of wells contain contaminated water, unfit for human consumption

Photos of sewage, which comes from homes to the ponds and then to the beach at Gaza, leading to the pollution of water and contamination of fish, and so into the food chain causing a health risk.

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