The Ministry of the interior announced the closure of the beach «Zikim», located between Ashkelon and the Gaza strip, until further notice.
Beach closed due to pollution caused by the release into the sea of sewage from the Gaza strip.
A few weeks ago, after the publication NEWSru.co.il «Gaza in darkness: on the possible consequences the shortage of electricity», a specialist from the Ministry of environmental protection commented on the assumption that the electricity cuts in the sector could lead to stoppage of sewage treatment plants in Gaza and coastal water pollution that threatens the ecology of Israel.
Rani Amir, Director of the national office for the protection of the marine environment under the Ministry of environment, in conversation with our correspondent confirmed that there is a threat to Israel in case of pollution of coastal water in the Gas. He noted that the General direction of the sea currents in the area – from South to North, so contaminated water shifted in the direction of Ashkelon. How significantly additional pollution will affect the environment of the Israeli coast, according to him, is difficult to predict, as it depends not only on sea currents, but also on weather conditions (direction and speed of wind, temperature, etc.)
The concentration of bacteria in Israeli waters pollution of the coastal line in Gaza, most likely, will not affect, said Amir. He believed that bathing on the beaches in the southern part of the Israeli Mediterranean coast is a serious threat will arise. However, it emphasizes Rani Amir, the increase of untreated sewage in the Gaza strip will certainly affect the marine ecology in the area. He explained that in the wastewater are fertilizers, their discharge leads to an increase in the rate of growth of algae, including poisonous that affects the entire chain – feeding fry, the food of large fish, etc.
Our source also said that sewage water contains solid particles. According to him, the increase in the concentration of such particles in coastal waters near the Gaza strip over time can damage the desalination installation in Ashkelon. Amir believes that this should not affect the quality of desalinated water, but will require more frequent repairs installation.