What is it about?

This most recent publication of the author is about wastewater treatment and reuse in the agriculture sector in the Arab world, especially in view of four important factors: 1) The population growth in the Arab countries; 2) The scarcity and shortages of fresh water, considering the fact that many Arab countries are under severe stress of water resources; 3) Climate change impacts with respect to water resources; and 4) The conflicts, instabilities, and geopolitics complexities in the region, especially between the Palestinians and Israelis on land and water resources.

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Why is it important?

This paper is important because it sheds light on the water scarcity in the Arab countries, with approximately 475 million population in 22 countries, in view of steady increasing population and climate change impacts.


The increase in water stress and shortage, facing many countries around the world, is one of the main difficulties confronting practical progress and sustainable development and management. Accordingly, managing the water assets of many countries around the world is nowadays a big challenge due to immense difficulties and vulnerabilities, including rapid industrialization and urbanization processes, population growth, geopolitical instability, and the effects of environmental changes, namely global warming and climate change. Because of global fresh waters scarcity and shortage, the demand for using non-conventional water resources, such as reusing treated wastewater for irrigation and industrial purposes, has become a nessitiy. However, the reuse of effluents for agricultural irrigation can have negative impacts on crop quality and soil conditions, as well as on public health and the environment. Moreover, improper management of agricultural irrigation with treated wastewater can also cause problems for plant production and soils’ physical and chemical propeties. This paper investigates the status of freshwater and wastewater in view of climate change, and socioeconomic, environmental, and health impacts of reusing treated wastewater for irrigation in the Arab region, with the focus on the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), as an example. The paper concludes that: 1) Approximately 13.2 billion cubic meters (BCM) of wastewater is yearly produced in the Arab countries, of which 5.7 BCM (43.2%) is treated and 7.5 MCM (56.8%) is untreated and dumped in open environments; 2) Regarding the OPT, where more than 87% of its fresh water resources are controlled and forcefully taken by the Israeli occupation authorities, Palestinians discharge large amounts of untreated wastewater into open lands (as in the case of the occupied West Bank) and in the Mediterranean Sea (as in the case of occupied and besieged Gaza Strip); and 3) The reused portion of treated wastewater in the OPT is close to zero.

Prof. Dr. Hilmi S. Salem

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Socioeconomic, environmental, and health impacts of reusing treated wastewater in agriculture in some Arab countries, including occupied Palestine, in view of climate change, Natural Resources Conservation and Research, August 2023, EnPress Publisher,
DOI: 10.24294/nrcr.v6i2.2229.
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