The Environmental Protection Ministry has launched a campaign to clean up Israel’s beaches.
NIS 2 million has been allocated for the project, which will be divided among seaside municipalities to fund local clean-up efforts and other programs to makes Israel’s beaches cleaner.
In a national study of Israel’s shoreline conducted in 2013, half of Israel’s coasts were ranked between medium and very dirty in the survey. Popular beaches in Ashkelon, Gan Raveh, Tirat Carmel and Nahariya were found to be among the nation’s worst.
Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz said that the number of trash-littered beaches along the Israeli coast is unacceptable.
“Seashores are the property of the general public, and the public deserves to enjoy clean and inviting beaches,” Peretz said in a statement announcing the ministry’s plans. “Therefore, I decided to make this a priority and take measures in favor of the issue.”
In addition to funding beach clean-up projects, the program will provide support for educational programs to train children on the importance of keeping Israel’s beaches clean. Resources have also been set aside to fund enforcement of clean beach rules in coastal areas.
The Environmental Protection Ministry stressed that Israel’s dirty beaches pose a serious environmental risk to Israel and around the world and the country must take action now to fight against beach degradation and protect the beaches for future generations.
“The phenomenon of marine waste is a global environmental problem growing all over the world, and in 2013 Mediterranean countries – among them Israel – decided to act vigorously to reduce this problem,” a statement from the ministry said, adding that the beauty of the beaches along the Mediterranean Sea and Eilat must be preserved.