Increased provisioning of ecosystem goods (e.g. Food, water, etc)
Yes, through treated water for the irrigation of olive trees and fodder crops.
Improved water quality
Yes, through CWs systems implementation (IRIDRA, 2021).
Biodiversity conservation or increased biodiversity
The CW may provide a new wildlife habitat and exploit the ecological benefits of the CWs apart from their function as a treatment facility (Knight, 1997; Stefanakis, 2019). The main characteristics of the CW (i.e., presence of water and vegetation) make it suitable for the creation of a new ecological habitat, by attracting wildlife species, especially birds, and establishing a green area (Stefanakis, 2019).
Increased quality and quantity of green and blue infrastructures
CWs entail significantly lower investment costs. Their main economic advantage comes from their operation phase due to the minimal energy requirements and the low needs for maintenance and personnel. As natural treatment technology, CWs can be characterized as sustainable systems, fulfilling sustainability criteria such as effective sanitation, contribution to public health and hygiene aspects, environmental protection and protection of natural resources. (Stefanakis, 2015). The project improved wastewater quality and helped to fulfil local needs for water, especially for irrigation. The treated wastewater is reused for olive-tree irrigation. The 'number of treated persons' equivalent is 4300 PE. (IRIDRA, 2021).
Improved aesthetic value
In contrast to conventional treatment systems, nature-based solutions of the wastewater treatment (such as CWs) may also provide indirect benefits such as aesthetic improvement of the landscape (Goulandris Natural History Museaum, 2021).
Provision of health benefits
Yes, NbS such as CWs play a significant role in treating and purifing of wastewater generated by the various and multiple human activities prior the final discharge, in order to reduce and eliminate the pollutant load, which is an absolutely necessary process not only to protect the natural environment and the habitat, but also to protect human health. (Stefanakis, 2015).
Low provisioning of ecosystem goods (e.g. Water, food)
Low water quality
Yes, there was also an original need to deal with the problem of improving wastewater quality, because most of it is not treated and is discharged directly into the environment. (IRIDRA, 2021).
Drought and heat risk
Yes, the main factors contributing to the severe levels of drought in the eastern Mediterranean region, which includes Historical Palestine, are deforestation, lack of rain, and a higher degree of evaporation from soil (Cook et al., 2016). Recent extreme droughts (from 1998 to 2012) in the Levant region (of which the State of Palestine forms part) are conspicuous in being roughly 50% drier than the driest period occurring within the past 500 years, and 10%–20% drier than the most severe droughts of the past 912 years (1100–2012). (Cook et al., 2016; Yihdego, Hilmi, Hadi, 2018). The Cook et al. (2016) study revealed that the presentdrought in the Mediterranean region is not merely the most extensive but also the driest that has impacted the region within the last five hundred years, due to its having averaged 20%–30% drier than all the preceding drought spells since the year 1100. (Cook et al., 2016; Yihdego, Hilmi, Hadi, 2018).
Low aesthetic value
Food security (SDG2) Zero Hunger
Good health and well-being (SDG3)
Clean water and sanitation (SDG6)
Industry, innovation and infrastructure (SDG9)
The constructed wetlands (CWs) systems with vertical subsurface flow (VF) represent an innovation in the national scene. (IRIDRA, 2021).
Sustainable cities and communities (SDG11)
In Palestine, exploiting water resource is at the top of the issues, since in many areas the available water is not sufficient to fullfill the local needs, especially when it comes to irrigation. At the same time, there needs to deal with the problem of improving wastewater quality, because most of it is not treated and is discharged directly in the environment. (IRIDRA, 2021).
Climate action, resilience, mitigation and adaptation (SDG13)
Yes, life-cycle analysis studies on CWs systems and comparison with alternative scenarios of using conventional treatment methods have also shown that the global warming potential of CWs is lower in terms of CO2 emissions (Stefanakis et al., 2014; Stefanakis, 2015).