(Israel Twitter)-Municipal Environmental Associations of Judea and Samaria, an environmental awareness group, was established by the settlers to address sewage treatment problems and cooperate with the Palestinian Authority on environmental issues. According to a Haaretz study, settlers account for 10% of the population in the West Bank but produce 25% of the sewage output. Beit Duqqu and Qalqilyah have accused settlers of polluting their farmland and villagers claim children have become ill after swimming in a local stream. Legal action was taken against 14 settlements by the Israeli Ministry of the Environment. The Palestinian Authority has also been criticized by environmentalists for not doing more to prevent water pollution. Settlers and Palestinians share the mountain aquifer as a water source, and both generate sewage and industrial effluents that endanger the aquifer. Friends of the Earth Middle East claimed that sewage treatment was inadequate in both sectors. Sewage from Palestinian sources was estimated at 46 million cubic meters a year, and sources from settler sources at 15 million cubic meters a year. A 2004 study found that sewage was not sufficiently treated in many settlements, while sewage from Palestinian villages and cities flowed into unlined cesspits, streams and the open environment with no treatment at all.
In a 2007 study, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority and Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection, found that Palestinian towns and cities produced 56 million cubic meters of sewage per year, 94 percent discharged without adequate treatment, while Israeli sources produced 17.5 million cubic meters per year, 31.5 percent without adequate treatment.
According to Palestinian environmentalists, the settlers operate industrial and manufacturing plants that can create pollution as many do not conform to Israeli standards. In 2005, an old quarry between Kedumim and Nablus was slated for conversion into an industrial waste dump. Pollution experts warned that the dump would threaten Palestinian water sources.