Hiria: A Garbage Dump Turned Recycling Dream

At 70 hectares big, the Hiria garbage dump is pretty hard to miss.It’s literally a mountain of garbage. Located off of the road connecting Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Hiria is a cautionary tale of consumerism, excess waste, and what happens when you don’t reduce, reuse and recycle. An ecological disaster since 1952 when it first became a dumping ground for the trash of the greater Tel Aviv region, Hiria is now being rejuvenated into a symbol of renewal and transformed into part of a greater park project.

The rehabilitation of the park includes the creation of a multi functional landscape to be available to the public, and the simultaneous reversal of existing ecological damage.

Environmentally pro-active activities taking place near the former garbage dump include a recycling park (which is used as an educational tool for both local and international professionals) and clean energy (the methane gas resulting from the decomposition of the garbage at Hiria is converted into energy).

 brigitte cartier green recycled design from Israel and France

A visitor’s center, which was design by eco-friendly designer Brigitte Cartier (her work above), has also being created in order to educate children and school groups about the damages of garbage and, in that way, nip future environmental damage in the bud. Activities at the visitor’s center will include educational programs that provide information about Hiria’s past, a resource center about the park’s current development, guided tours, and the option to host public or private events.

Certain recreational activities are already available in the park, such as bike and hiking trails. Have no fear, though – the park managers promise that all nasty garbage odors have been eliminated.

During the month of July, special family-oriented and eco-art activities are available:

Family Tours and Reuse Workshops – offered every Thursday morning in July

Re-Use Art Workshops with Brigitte Cartier -offered on July 17th (with a focus on plastics and nylon) and July 31st (with a focus on billboard signs)

In the future, though, let’s try to avoid another Hiria-esque situation. See more Green Prophet advice about avoiding garbage at Mulch, rot, and reinvigorate: Composting (Part 1) and Yoav Kotik Giveaway and Cool Reuse Ideas.

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4 thoughts on “Hiria: A Garbage Dump Turned Recycling Dream”

  1. I’m trying to spread the word about recycling.

    Find Recycling locations near you @ 1800recycling.com.

  2. Cecilia says:

    I live in an apartment building as do most Israelis and I have noticed so much waste in our buildings dumpster. So few people recycle. Even though there are plastic bottle receptacles, carton receptacle and a paper receptacle. I think I am the only person in my entire building that uses it. I believe people tend to be lazy and need some encouragement. So I decided to pin a paper on the bulletin board, reminding everyone of how we each as individuals are all responsible for contributing to the waste and pollution of our environemnt. I also decided to purchase some plastic bins in the garbage room labeled for plastic bottles, cardboard, etc and empty them myself. I would like to create a powerful flyer. Could someone out there help me come up with some powerful statistics. I.E. how many lbs of waste a year does an average Israeli throw out? How much plastic bottles, etc?

    thank you in advance for your help and suggestions

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