Going Green

Going Green: A green thought for a green weekend


    By Consul Maya Karmely:

    This weekend the City of Chicago and its river will be covered in green; so accordingly, it seems like a good time to bring to light another kind of green- green tech in Israel.
    It's no secret that the world today faces many challenges in preserving resources and energy. It seems that wherever you turn, you hear about the quest for a "greener future."
    Israel is a country that has more challenges than most when it comes to utilizing resources, and one of its most significant challenges is water scarcity and preservation.
    Looking at Lake Michigan (which is 2.5 times the size of Israel!), it seems difficult to imagine having to deal with a shortage of water, like we do in Israel.
    However, Scarcity is a Wonderful Source of Innovation!
    Let me share with you three of Israel's strengths when dealing with this challenge:
    1.       Technology- Israel is regarded as a nexus of world-class expertise when it comes to water. This is because of its novel and innovative technology, recycling, desalinization techniques, and more.
    2.       Efficiency - Reducing the amount of water used and increasing its reuse is imperative. Israel is breaking records in terms of the percentage of water reused in the country - over 75%! (Followed by Spain that reuses about 12%)
    3.       Education: Last but not least- raising awareness is vital for future generations. There are many campaigns and educational resources about the importance of preserving water. Growing up in Israel, children are taught and often recite, "Haval al kol tipa," every drop matters. [I have many friends that still cannot pass a dripping faucet without feeling compelled to do something about it.)
    Israel is considered a significant player and an expert when it comes to water technologies, which are being exported all around the world. Preserving and utilizing water usage is important everywhere. Of course, it goes without saying that environmental efficiency programs also have positive financial aspects for private companies and governments alike – "green" can manifest itself in many ways!
  • Recent Activities in the Midwest

    The Consulate has been very engaged in water issues and is always working to develop new partnerships between Israel and the states in our region related to this topic. Just last week, Israeli Professor Mordechai Shechter, an expert in environmental research, visited Chicago, Milwaukee and Kansas.  Shechter is a founding dean of the School of Sustainability at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, a pioneer in environmental research, and one of the field's leading researchers. During his time in the Midwest, Shechter met with State Officials from Kansas and Illinois and attended and spoke at the Sustainability Summit and Exposition in Milwaukee, NEIU International Water Nexus Summit, UWM Water institute, and at Kansas State University's College of Agriculture. Shechter shared many ideas and technology advancements that Israel is utilizing in the field of water. He also opened many doors to future collaborations between Israel and these States in this arena.
    I would like to thank Yariv Becher, Consul of Economic Affairs in our Economic Mission, who gave me some insights for this article, and share with all of you some information about the upcoming water conference in Israel:  http://www.watec-israel.com or http://itrade.gov.il/us-chicago/