Jan 20, 2021
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — The Gaza Strip just lately managed to reap the benefits of the newest applied sciences used to provide potable distilled water, due to Israeli cooperation.
In early January, Damour for Community Development, a nongovernmental group primarily based in Ramallah within the West Bank, introduced into the besieged enclave two atmospheric water mills that flip air into water utilizing solar energy. The machines are produced by Watergen, an Israeli department of a US firm that obtained the patent for this system in 2015. Watergen paid for half the associated fee of the 2 gadgets, whereas three households residing in Europe donated the opposite half. The two machines value about $61,000 every.
The first generator was positioned within the municipality of Abasan al-Kabira whereas the second was put in within the municipality Khan Yunis, within the south of Gaza. Meanwhile, the Arava Institute for Environmental Research in Israel donated a 3rd generator that was positioned in Abdel Aziz Rantisi Specialized Hospital for Children within the Gaza Strip.
The consultant of Damour for Community Development in Gaza, Fathi Sheikh Khalil, informed Al-Monitor that the system producing water from air makes use of a warmth exchanger to chill the air and condense water vapor into recent ingesting water. The generator depends on a number of sand and mineral filters to purify the air and seize humidity. Then the warmth trade course of begins, with water absorbed and distilled, and the mandatory minerals injected into it, he added.
Sheikh Khalil stated that this cutting-edge know-how offers an inexpensive resolution for locating a renewable supply of pure water in Gaza. “The production capacity varies according to the generator’s size and filters and depending on the temperature and humidity. The generator in Abasan al-Kabira produces 800 liters [211 gallons] of water per day at a cost not exceeding $10,000 provided the humidity level is 75%. The generator in Khan Yunis produces 6,000 liters [1,585 gallons] per day at a cost of $70,000 when humidity is close to 90%,” he famous.
He added that the 2 mills want solely a really small floor versus desalination vegetation that require massive areas for his or her development, to not point out their want for a water supply and electrical energy provides. “Desalination plants have a high production capacity ranging between 20,000 [5,283 gallons] and 100,000 liters [26,417 gallons]. The generated water can be used for agriculture and domestic consumption and not only as drinking water, while Watergen generators are only used for drinking water.”
Sheikh Khalil famous that the mills are actually three months right into a six-month trial part aimed to evaluate their operation and high quality. “We are currently conducting a preliminary study on their economic viability, as solar energy was used instead of electricity to run the generators. We were able to install panels generating 100 kilowatt of solar energy for the generator in the municipality of Khan Yunis to reduce the cost of electricity, which is exorbitant in Gaza. The generators certainly will not solve the water crisis in Gaza, but they will raise the awareness of Gaza residents about the existence of this technology, which can be the solution to secure clean water.”
He stated that Damour for Community Development managed to work in Gaza with out coping with the Hamas-controlled authorities establishments, given its relationship and work with the Israeli Wadi Araba Institute involved with the atmosphere and various vitality. “The role of [the Hamas-run] institutions is limited to receiving generators from the Palestinian side, and they do not coordinate with the Israeli side,” he added.
Anis Abu Hamad, a member of the Development and Investment Department at Abasan al-Kabira municipality, praised the generator’s excessive manufacturing capability in comparison with its value. “Gaza has never been provided with water as clean as that produced by these generators. It is not possible to compare this water to that of the desalination plants widespread in Gaza. These plants are depleting the groundwater,” he informed Al-Monitor.
He stated that Gazans purchase ingesting water from water tank vehicles. This water is extracted from groundwater and topic to therapy processes, however will not be examined and examined for compliance with well being requirements, he defined. “The water produced from air is used by the general public — especially kidney patients — due to its low salinity. It may well be a solution to the water crisis in Gaza. The generators that were brought in were large in size. If more solar panels are added, the operating cost would be zero and the generators would be highly economically feasible.”
Economic analyst Mouin Rajab informed Al-Monitor that the Gaza Strip suffers a shortage of potable water. The United Nations had warned in a 2012 report that Gaza can be “unfit for life” by 2020 if nothing was achieved to ease the continued blockade imposed in 2006.
In 2017, the United Nations issued one other report calling for motion in relation to water within the Gaza Strip. The report acknowledged that greater than 95% of the water in Gaza will not be appropriate for ingesting. Rajab stated that comparable reviews contributed to delaying the water shortage disaster. “The European Union and several international institutions intervened to construct water desalination projects and plants in the Gaza Strip. Also, the rainy season recently improved leading to an improvement of groundwater.”
He stated that Gaza suffers a extreme water disaster attributable to its reliance on desalination vegetation, including, “Groundwater is being desalinated and the extracted salts and impurities are repumped into the sewage or the sea, which further complicates the water problem in Gaza. The enclave needs unique, environmentally friendly projects that provide clean potable water that meets environmental standards.”
Rajab praised the advantages of huge desalination vegetation however pointed to their many environmental issues and their exorbitant development value. “Desalination plants require huge spaces and equipment to generate enough water. The generator producing water from air does not waste water and has no negative impacts on the environment,” he stated.
Despite the shortage of water, poor electrical energy provide and hovering unemployment, the inhabitants in Gaza is steadily rising. The inhabitants within the besieged enclave, estimated now round 2 million, is predicted to reach 3.Three million by 2030. This requires modern and qualitative initiatives to protect life in Gaza.
“We do not have economic or political independence, so why should we not receive donations from Israeli parties?” Rajab stated, commenting on the donation of the water mills by an Israeli firm.
He concluded, “Until the Palestinian government can rely on itself and find an alternative, we will not [refuse] donations from Israel. The citizens’ interest and health are above any political outbidding.”