The Humanitarian Impact of Gaza’s Electricity and Fuel Crisis, March 2014

Originally published


Key Facts

  • The Gaza Strip is supplied with electricity from three sources: purchases from Israel (120 megawatts, MW) and from Egypt (28 MW), and production by the Gaza Power Plant (GPP) (currently 60 MW). This supply meets approximately 46% of the estimated demand.

  • Due to severe shortages of fuel, since July 2013, the GPP has been operating at approximately half of its capacity of 120 MW, triggering an average of rolling power outages of up to 12 hours per day. On several occasions, it has been forced to shut down completely, resulting in scheduled blackouts of up to 16 hours a day.
    Due to the insufficient and irregular power supply:

  • More than 30% of households in Gaza are supplied with running water for 6-8 hours only once every four days (WASH cluster).

  • Up to 90 million liters of partially treated sewage are discharged into the Mediterranean Sea every day (WASH cluster).

  • By January 2014, over 300 medical machines at hospitals were out of order, including the only MRI machine at Gaza European Hospital, as of (WHO).

  • The average waiting time for some types of elective surgery at Gaza’s largest hospital (Shifa) is over a year (WHO).

  • Water desalination units have reduced their operation levels by approximately 40% since the beginning of 2014 (WASH cluster).

  • At least 140,000 dunums of land planted with fruits and vegetables are at risk of drought due to inability to use 85 percent of the agricultural wells operated with electricity (PARC).

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.