RAMALLAH, June 30 (JMCC) - In lieu of an agreement over what to do with Palestinian sewage from East Jerusalem
, the waste water continues to flow into the environmentally fragile Dead Sea. Israeli officials are considering establishing a treatment plant in East Jerusalem, reports the Global Post
“It’s the greatest environmental hazard in the country,” said Naomi Tzur, Jerusalem’s deputy mayor, who heads the planning and environmental committees on the city council. “I don’t sleep easily at night knowing that this is happening.”Read
The Dead Sea is one of the contenders to be named among the Seven Natural Wonders of the World in an online poll that organizers estimate will draw a billion voters by the time results are announced next year. But its location also puts it in the firing line of a conflict almost as bitter as the sea’s highly saline water.
In 1993, the German government offered to finance a sewage-treatment plant for East Jerusalem. The plant was to be run jointly by Israel and the Palestinian Authority, which was founded that year as part of the Oslo Accords. The Palestinians refused to accept a joint project because they didn’t want to recognize any Israeli authority over the territory occupied since 1967.
So while West Jerusalem has state of the art sewage facilities, the effluent of Palestinians living east of the pre-1967 border has nowhere to go but down to the Dead Sea. In a city of about 800,000 people, 32 percent of the population is essentially tipping the contents of their toilets, showers and kitchen appliances directly into the Dead Sea.
the story at the Global Post