Report on the Status of the Hebron-Besor-Wadi Gaza Basin

This report presents the current state of the freshwater and wastewater conditions in the Hebron-Besor-Wadi Gaza Basin Current challenges and risks to water security, public health, and environment are highlighted with further exploration of impacts within the context of gender. This drainage basin originates in the Hebron Hills of the West Bank, flows downstream west across the Negev, and drains into the Mediterranean through Gaza The basin spans over 3,500 km and is a significant source of surface and groundwater for human, agricultural, and industrial use

Difficulties in Israeli-Palestinian water cooperation have resulted in limited access to freshwater for Palestinians and the persistent pollution of the environment through the discharge of untreated wastewater. Problems in advancing upstream wastewater treatment infrastructure, compounded with the discharge of effluents from domestic, agricultural, and industrial facilities into the Hebron Stream directly impact environmental and public health in the region Thus, both surface and groundwater quality are heavily tainted in the
basin Girls and women are placed at an even higher risk according to community, as they face WASH challenges first. Despite innumerable indications during the last few decades of widespread contamination across Israeli-Palestinian catchments, and in this basin particularly, the situation to date remains largely unchanged

Conditions in Gaza are even more critical, as over 97% of the Coastal Aquifer is contaminated by sewage and seawater intrusion and over two million people lack adequate access to safe drinking water and sanitation services. Persistent lack of reliable energy supply, Israeli restrictions on trade and the import of materials, consecutive rounds of violence and war between Hamas, the de-facto government in the Gaza Strip, and the Government of Israel exacerbate the water and wastewater crisis for Palestinians in Gaza.


Facilitate third party involvement to reconcile differences between the parties and
relevant authorities

Reduce non-revenue water in the Hebron Governorate

Increase supply from non-conventional resources and plan/implement reuse
component of the Hebron WWTP in parallel with the treatment facility.

Enhance transparency of large-scale infrastructure planning and awareness about the
benefits of wastewater reuse in the Hebron Governorate

Negotiate a detailed purchasing agreement and prioritise finalising infrastructure for receiving the full Red Sea-Dead Sea water quantities

Prevent sewage spills from Gaza into the Mediterranean, including to Israel, by
completion of wastewater infrastructure and increasing power supply to wastewater
infrastructure in Gaza

Increase monitoring of the public health crisis in Gaza and its cross-boundary effects

Increase gender-awareness in the design of WASH policy and infrastructure

full report: