Rooftop Rainwater Harvesting to Alleviate Domestic Water Shortage in the West Bank, Palestine

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Alawna, Sandy Mofleh Ghazi
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جامعة النجاح الوطنية
Water is a key factor for sustainable development. In arid and semi-arid regions, water is becoming less in quantity and bad in quality. This is due to the increasing demand of water for different uses. Among which, the domestic use is the most important. This situation compiled the dire need to look for a new and sustainable water resources (e.g. rooftop rainwater harvesting, RRWH). This study aims to assess the domestic water supply-demand (DWSD) gap (deficit) in the different West Bank governorates and to evaluate the possibility of RRWH technique to bridge this gap. Moreover, to evaluate the possibility of adopting RRWH to alleviate the domestic water shortage in water poor (WP) yet highly domestic rainwater harvesting suitability (DRWHS) areas. Additionally, the potential volume for domestic water saving (PDWS) from RRWH in the different West Bank governorates were evaluated. The methodology of this study mainly rely on the geographic information system (GIS) together with MS Excel. RRWH volumes were estimated for the different West Bank governorates based on the available GIS shapefiles of buildings and long-term areal annual average rainfall. According to Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) data for the year 2017, the DWSD gap in the West Bank is nearly 32 million cubic meters (MCM). Generally, there are many strategic options for water resources management to increase water availability and to bridge the DWSD gap. In the West Bank, and given the uncertain water supply from conventional resources (e.g. groundwater), RRWH would be a strategic option to bridge the DWSD gap. The results of this study show that the RRWH volume that can be harvested from the West Bank rooftops is nearly 37 MCM. Additionally, the adoption of RRWH in the West Bank can bridge the DWSD gap in Tubas, Salfit, Ramallah & Al-Bireh and Jerusalem governorates. Moreover, the adoption of RRWH in the high to very high DRWHS areas can harvest nearly 89% of the total RRWH volume in the West Bank. Implementation of RRWH in the high water poor yet suitable areas amounted to 53% of total RRWH volume in the West Bank. This study will help potential stockholders toward adopting of RRWH as a viable water resources option to minimize the domestic water shortage mainly in the water poor areas in the West Bank.