“We are proud of Israel’s capacity to develop technological solutions to our chronic drought,” says Sarit Caspi-Oron, water scientist at Adam Teva V’Din, “but desalination plants are a mixed blessing even if they provide relief from acute drought.”
She adds that these factories occupy valuable coastal land resources in locations vulnerable to security incidents. Desalinated water lacks magnesium and other natural minerals, which worries health authorities.
Israel could remediate polluted water wells and underground reservoirs to provide 20% of future water supplies and avoid construction of another desalination plant.
“It’s basic housekeeping; scientists estimate that 100 million cubic meters of groundwater could be recovered each year,” says Sarit. “Based on our analysis of the scope and type of contaminants needing treatment, we believe it’s doable.”
Adam Teva V’Din has drafted a legislative bill and an advocacy campaign to convince the Water Authority and policymakers to approve a nation-wide, cost-effective program of groundwater remediation while it’s still feasible.