نوعية مياه الشرب في مخيمي بيت لحم للاجئين الفلسطينيين/ مخيم عايدة والعزة، فلسطين
Measurement of Water Quality Indicators in Treated Drinking Water in Two Palestinian Refugee Camps
شذى محمد عبد الفتاح العزه
Shatha Mohammad Abdelfttah Alazza
MetadataShow full item record
This study investigated drinking water quality in two Palestinian refugee camps (Aida and Alazzah; Bethlehem, West Bank). Water samples (n = 720) were collected at three different sampling points along the water distribution line, including community tanks, network pipes and house taps, and analyzed for total coliform and E. coli bacteria and residual chlorine. Samples were collected over 16 months from March 2016 to June 2017. The results show that water from the community tanks, where water is delivered to the camps, were relatively free of bacterial contamination and had the highest residual chlorine concentrations. In contrast, water quality deteriorated downstream of the tanks in both camps. A total of 15/200 and 2/77samples of network-pipe water from Aida and Alazzah Camps, respectively, had elevated levels of total coliform bacteria, and a total of 51/281 and 7/100 samples collected inside homes in Aida and Alazzah Camps, respectively, had elevated levels of total coliform bacteria. E coli was detected in 2 samples from Aida Camp and 1 samples from Alazzah Camp The average residual chlorine was 0.02 mg/L, network pipe and tap water samples, which is significantly less than WHO recommendations (0.2 - 0.8mg/L). These results indicate that the water from the community tap was mostly clean. Conversely, the drinking water in the two camps iscontaminated both in network pipes and water tanks. The concentration of residual chlorine is interlinked with water quality which decreases over the distance the water travels through the system. Thus, the water samples from the households farthest from the community tap were most contaminated by bacteria. The study recommended forBethlehem Water Authority to increase the chlorine in drinking water according to the international standards, and should work with UNRWA to restore and replace the water pipe networks; also they should take action for regular water testing and share the results with the residents of the camps. NGOs that work across the camps can host workshops for the community to inform the residents about water safety and conservation. Moreover, future studies shall be conducted by responsible parts from Bethlehem water authority, UNRWA, and NGOs to better understand water quality in the camps..