Department of Middle Eastern Studies
Department of Middle Eastern Studies

Secrets of Arab-Israel Cooperation on Environmental Quality in the Middle East

A lecture by Alon Tal

Fri, January 24, 2014 | SRH 3.124

3:30 PM

Secrets of Arab-Israel Cooperation on Environmental Quality in the Middle East

The nations of the Holy Land and the Levant are all of  such modest size that their environmental problems are largely trans-boundary. Without cooperation among Israel with its Arab neighbors, progress on environmental improvement in areas from stream restoration to water resources development to species repatriation and coastal zone protection can be modest at best.  This lecture reviews over twenty years of "below the radar" environmental cooperation in the region, including both public and private efforts to improve the quality of the regional environment, both within and outside of the 'peace process.' Based on those experiences, the talk discusses how Arab-Israeli multi-lateral and bi-lateral cooperation might be leveraged to ensure an ecological dividend for the region.


Alon Tal, Professor at the Ben Gurion University of the Negev, is in the United States on sabbatical at Stanford University during the 2013-14 academic year. Professor Tal founded the Israel Union for Environmental Defense, Israel's leading green advocacy organization and the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies, a regional center for Arabs and Israelis.  Between 2010 and 2013 he served as chair of Israel's Green Party. Haaretz newspaper selected him as the country's most effective environmental leader. Israel's Ministry of Environment gave him a life achievement award at age 48. Professor Tal has worked closely with Palestinians, Jordanians and other Israeli neighbors to improve the regional environmental quality in the Middle East. 

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