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Israel’s water crisis

March 13, 2008

Once again, Israelis are being confronted full-on in the media about water issues. This time the news is even more bleak than usual – Israel is facing the worst water crisis in the last ten years.

Writes Haaretz Correspondent Zafrir Rinat:

The deficit in the water balance (amount of water pumped out compared to rainfall) will reach 410 million cubic meters by the end of the year, almost twice as much as last year’s deficit. Altogether, the past four years’ accumulated deficit is almost a billion cubic meters.

The Kinneret is 60 centimeters lower today than it was last year and more than three meters lower than four years ago. Last month – the last main winter month – the Hydraulic Service’s monitoring stations did not register a single significant rise in any of Israel’s streams.

Dropping water levels endanger the water quality, mainly in the coast and western mountain aquifers. The lower the fresh water level, the more sea water or salt water enters the aquifers from deep in the ground. The water being drilled along the coastal plain, from the Dan region to Hadera, has already been contaminated by salt. In some places, sea water has penetrated as far as a kilometer inland.

For Zalul, this is only a reminder of how precious our water resources are in Israel and how important it is to preserve and protect what little we have. You can bet we’ll be following this issue closely… and stay tuned for water saving tips!

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