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Israel closes 20% of water facilities over pollution

Natural water sources contaminated, mostly by security industry
Palestinian children play with water at Al-Aqsa [File photo]

Israel has closed a fifth of all its drinking water facilities since 1998 due to industrial contamination, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Saturday.

Quoting figures presented at a conference by the country’s Water Authority, the newspaper said the factories involved in the security industry were the main cause of the contamination.

After finding explosive material and carcinogens in natural water sources, Israeli authorities had to stop extracting water from them and set up systems to monitor other water sites around the country.

According to Haaretz, nearly 40 percent of Israel’s drilling sites were closed in the period between 1998 and 2015 due to pollution from industrial factories.

By the end of the 1990s, many drilling facilities were also shut because of pollution from fertilizer used in agriculture or due to sea water infiltrating fresh water aquifers, it added.

Natural water sources provide half of the water used in Israel.

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