A 3 year study between a joint Palestinian and Israeli research team monitored two of their major shared watersheds: the Zomar/Alexander and the Hebron/Besor basins. The extremely degraded water quality conditions were traced to a variety of point and non-point pollution sources. This article summarizes the team's recommendations for future management activities if a coordinated rehabilitation effort is to be successful.A common restoration strategy should include transboundary planning that encompasses the entire watershed, with reduction in phosphorus loadings being a top shared priority. The sides should agree on common 'in-stream' standards and pollution reduction goals. Pollution reduction strategies must focus on eliminating contaminants at the source, rather than continuing present interventions that attempt to mitigate or treat pollutants after they are already in the stream. Non-point source controls, especially for agricultural runoff, have not been a priority until now, but must be adopted for water quality objectives to be met. Only through a joint rehabilitation strategy will progress be made in restoring the quality of these important natural resources.
- Stream restoration
- Watershed management