Israel’s national water company, Mekorot, is doubling the water it supplies to Gaza despite continued rocket threats emanating from the Hamas-ruled Palestinian coastal enclave.
Mekorot said the annual water supply to Gaza will increase from 5 million cubic meters to 10 million cubic meters, and will be supplied through an existing pipeline from Nahal Oz near southern Gaza as well as an older line that will supply water to central Gaza.
“Several years ago we laid the line near the fence on purpose in order to give the Palestinians an increased water supply. With the rise of Hamas, contact was cut off, and only recently have conditions become ripe to supply them the water,” said Mekorot’s vice president of engineering, Avraham Ben-Yosef, Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported.
“Thanks to our desalination plants along the coast, there is no lack of water in the country. There is no problem transferring water, the only limitation is the means of water supply. Moreover, we intend to enlarge the water lines to the Palestinian Authority in order to increase the supply,” Ben-Yosef added.
After years of drought, Israel has seen an end to water shortages due to new methods of conservation, water recycling, and massive new desalination plants such as the Sorek plant south of Tel Aviv, which is said to be the world’s largest of its kind, producing 40 billion gallons of water per year.
Israel also provides 57 million cubic meters of water per year to the Palestinians living in the West Bank, which is nearly double the amount agreed to in the Oslo Accords, and 55 million cubic meters annually to Jordan.