# Statistics on water access

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Average net consumption at the household level after losses from the network:

Palestine   =      50 liters   (13.2 gallons)   per person per day

Israel      =    300 liters   (79.3 gallons)  per person per day

World Health Organization’s minimum recommended daily allowance = 100 liters (26.4 gallons) per person per day

A quick shower uses 50 liters (13.2 gallons) of water, and it takes 9 liters (2.4 gallons) to flush the toilet.[i]

Almost one quarter of the communities connected to the water network receive less that 50 liters per person per day.  The World Bank also reports that, “In the southern towns, supply to 16% of people living in connected households is less than 20 liters [5.3 gallons] per capita per day.”  These extremely low consumption figures are for communities connected to a water network.  10% of the population still is not connected to a water network. [ii]

According to a report released by Amnesty International: “The 450,000 Israeli settlers, who live in the West Bank in violation of international law, use as much or more water than the Palestinian population of some 2.3 million.”[v]

[i] 50 liters for a quick shower and 9 liters to flush a toilet are conservative estimates from Yotam Feldman and Uri Blau’s article in Ha’aretz Magazine, “A dry and thirsty land” (14 August 09).  These numbers originally came from a pamphlet published by the Israeli Water Authority.  Other estimates to compare to:  The water usage calculator at http://www.csgnetwork.com/ waterusagecalc.html says a 5 minute shower with a standard shower head flow rate of 3.8 consumes 19 gallons of water or 72 liters, and a standard toilet takes 5 gallons of water to flush, or 18.9 L, and a reduced flush toilet takes 1.6 gallons, which is 6 liters.  According to http://www.uswitch.com/water/how-much-water-use/ a standard shower is 80 liters and a standard flush is 8 liters.

[ii] Average network water losses are 34%.  This reality contributes to the low consumption figure. World Bank (2009), “Assessment of Restrictions on Palestinian Water Sector Development,” p. 17.

[iii] Israeli water consumption includes freshwater and desalinated seawater.  Recycled wastewater is used significantly as well in the agriculture sector.

[iv] B'Tselem (2009), “Foul Play: Israel's Neglect of Wastewater Treatment in the West Bank.”

[v] Amnesty International (October 2010), “Troubled Waters: Palestinians Denied Fair Access to Water,” p. 4.