Nature in War
An average of 20 ton/day of medical waste is being produced and stored in an unhealthy way due to closure. The accumulated wastes and the inability of municipalities to access the designated landfills have led to burning almost half of the generated waste, a practice that entails an estimated 3.50 million USD loss, according to MEnA sources. These sources also estimate the overall economic loss in the environmental sector has reached, if not surpassed, 20 million USD as of Dec 1, 2000.
The Solid Waste crux augment in terms of collection, inability to transfer and the use of unauthorized landfill sites by Palestinians, whereas Israelis have gained an illegal access to the Palestinians' land fills to dispose of their own waste there. The accumulation of waste in unauthorized sites which were previously closed (i.e. Ramallah dumping site) may cause more environmental damage when more rain percolates in the region. These environmental damages are embodied in Qalquilia where the accumulated waste has led to the flooding of the Wadi containing it into the surrounding agricultural lands.
Figure 6: Accumulated Solid and Hazardous Waste which might lead to Further Loss of Biodiversity Feeding on it.
More imminent problem is looming in Nablus where all access has been denied to the county's healthcare waste incinerator, resulting in large amounts of waste left unmanaged and may be disposed in open lands and/or mixed with domestic waste.
More importantly is the problematic nature of the waste disposed by the Israelis into the Palestinian landfills. The fear of disposing of hazardous material is paramount, since a large shipment of toxic waste shipment was denied access into Jordanian territories and other alternatives are being sought. One site was the Syrian Golan Heights and the others are feared to be within the Palestinian Territories. Several attempts were pursued to classify the nature of disposed waste but to no avail, for the Israelis have placed a strict closure and intensive military presence at the sites of disposal.
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