Israel Celebrates "Earth Day" Today Only Tomorrow, With Lights Out, Beach Cleaning, Concerts and Green Awards

yuvel-chen hedgehog hedgehogs tel aviv israel photo
(Photographer Yuval Chen spent almost two years snapping shots of hedgehogs in Tel Aviv’s urban landscape. For more see ISRAELITY).

Celebrated since 1970, Israel is for the first time celebrating Earth Day nationally. They didn’t put their lights out for an hour a few weeks ago to mark Earth Hour (there was a big football game after all), but plan to mark Earth Day, today, with full respect. Take note that other Middle Eastern countries like Jordan did mark Earth Hour.

With most Earth Day events held in Israel tomorrow, on April 23, reports Haaretz, lights out will be the central event, where cities such as Tel Aviv and Jerusalem will turn their lights out from 8 to 9 pm in a bid to raise awareness about energy conservation.

A concert at Rabin Square featuring the Balkan Beat Box and more will celebrate Earth Day, and rumor has it the event will be powered by human cyclists and biodeisel, in a similar style to last year’s Earth Event as Karen reported.

Israel joins other cities around the world who will turn their lights off for the green cause. The United Nations has ruled that the event be marked worldwide.

It was a U.S. senator Gaylord Nelson who called on Americans several decades ago “to hold a nationwide protest against environmental destruction.” A couple of years later, the world’s first first Earth Day Committee was set up in Sweden. It took Israelis a while to catch on, but when they take wind of an idea, they go for it in full force.

“Israel’s Earth Day events this year will include a campaign to clean Tel Aviv’s beaches, and the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel will hold an event for children and young adults at Rabin Square, including a pyrotechnic display and performances by well-known performers,” according to Haaretz.

Afterwards lights will go off in Tel Aviv and the country’s capital Jerusalem for an hour, while the regional municipalities in Haifa, Be’er Sheva, Dimona and Kfar Sava are expected to turn lights off as well.

Green and Black Awards

The main event of the day for the day will be nearby at Rabin Square, at the Gat Cinema where the environmental organization Life and Environment will hand out their “Green Globe” awards to people and organizations which have made the biggest contributions to environmental causes in Israel, and in parallel the “Black Globes” will be “awarded” to those who’ve done the most harm.

This year Coca Cola in Bnei Brak gets the Black Globe (for its lack of efforts to promote recycling campaigns), while the Green Globe goes to the Achla organization, which reduces defense-related pollution in the Ramat Hasharon, area and to Magic Ceramic, the company producing devices for water conservation at home.

::Haaretz

More on Israel’s environment:
A Green Globe to Protect Israel’s Environmental Treasures
Tel Aviv Earth Hour 2008 Concert Powered By Human Cyclists
What To Do On Tu B’shvat – Earth Day for the Trees

::Earth Day

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