The Palestinian territory of Gaza has suffered from the shortage of clean water for many years. The situation became even worse during the Gaza war in 2014 when the territory’s water supply network and facilities, as well as the wastewater treatment plants were damaged or completely destroyed. The energy shortage in Gaza also means that not enough water can be pumped for the residents. The water in the territory must be treated before it can be used as drinking water.
Finland has supported the reconstruction and development of the Gazan water and energy infrastructure in cooperation with the World Bank and seven other countries from 2013. In 2012–2017 a total of 35 kilometres of water pipes were laid in the territory, while 41 kilometres of pipes were repaired. Wastewater treatment plants were improved so that 78,5 per cent of all wastewater can now be purified. Preparations to construct a large seawater desalination plant started. Plans to start a new wastewater treatment plant were created. The work will benefit all 1,8 million residents of the territory.
Photo: Lehtikuva/Reuters/Mohammed Salem, graphics: Juho Hiilivirta