Olive picking season is an important time for Palestinians to not only come together as a community to collect olives but to experience the beauty and landscape of the Palestinian countryside. However, the harvesting of olives entails the opening of olive processing plants which has major environmental implications.
As an agricultural engineer specialized in environmental and agriculture development Raneen Fayyad of Tulkarim noticed the correlation between olive picking season and the increase of factory pollution, she expresses, “I am passionate about finding solutions to environmental waste, so I decided for a graduation project to develop a technique to purify olive factory waste.” As a result, Raneen developed Water Bag an innovative water treatment solution that purifies water tainted by olive factory waste.
Water Bag utilizes photochemical techniques to treat and purify polluted water supplies in an environmental friendly and sustainable process, Raneen explains, “The shortages in Palestinian water supplies has terrible effects on farms, so I developed a photochemical solution which is ecofriendly and does not use harsh chemicals to treat polluted water to help agriculturalists utilize essential water sources that are scarce and desperately needed to sustain farms.”
Depending on funding received, Raneen will target 250 olive factories and will further expand her project to target any Palestinian factory that contribute to water pollution so as to not only purify polluted waters but to reduce environmental waste negatively affecting Palestinian communities. According to Raneen, “It is not enough to develop and implement Water Bag, I am also actively working to increase environmental awareness to not only inspire future generations about the necessity of preserving our communities but to make factory owners more accountable for the wastes they release into the environment.”
Raneen is positive that the success of “Water Bag” throughout the Palestinian territories will enhance her projects profile to expand implementation of her solution globally, “I want to reach communities all over the world, and will continue to work towards finding sustainable solutions that effectively address environmental waste!”
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