The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) today issued a press release, which highlights the extent of the water problem in Gaza: only 11.4% of its population have access to safe, clean water. This finding was published alongside other environmental statistics on Palestine to mark World Environment Day (WED), a UN initiative to raise global awareness and action for the environment.
Measured according to the definition of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the percentage of Palestinians who use safe drinking water stands at slightly over 60%. This figure is raised significantly by the 95.1% of Palestinians in the West Bank who are able to drink potable water.
Israel’s destruction of water sanitation plants in Gaza is one of the reasons for the severe shortage of clean water. It justifies these actions by claiming the plants were built illegally.
PCBS’ worrying report on water safety comes on the same day as Save the Children report on mental health in Gaza. Its research warns that Gaza children are on the brink of a mental health crisis, with 95% of young people showing acute psychological distress.