Is Israel a water hog, unjustly siphoning aquifers from its neighbours? Does it take more than its share? Or does it have political justification for managing its resources? Can water resources be developed so that all in the region have water security, with Israel as an instigator of change, perhaps?
With a leading spot in the water industry – from desalination technology to water saving technology – Israel has been getting a bad rap from the media and NGO reports, despite the fact that the country is attempting to cooperate on water issues despite the difficulties.
Dropping deep into the well of water experts in Israel, Green Prophet was asked by the Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) based in Mumbai to interview the country’s top experts in water. The aim is to find ways Israel could help promote water security in the region. And to take this information to high level policy makers. We’ve interviewed the country’s Water Commissioner’s office, the heads of top NGOs like Friends of the Earth Middle East, and researchers who know Israel’s water story from working in the field.
Over the next week or so, Green Prophet will be highlighting these different experts, who were posed with five questions directed to long term sustainable solutions. We hope this series will be an invaluable tool for local and international journalists, and international policy makers involved in the Middle East region. Green Prophet will be happy to give contacts to these people to those who ask.
We also hope it will be interesting for Green Prophet readers who know that ‘water’ is one of, if not the most important issue, in the Middle East-MENA region. To know more about the project, we’ve collected more from the Strategic Foresight group, below. This is the same group that penned the report on the Cost of Conflict on the Environment in the Middle East.
From the desk of SFG:
The following series on Israel’s Water situation was initiated by Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) with assistance and guidance from Green Prophet.
SFG is a political think tank in Mumbai India that works on global future issues. It is currently conducting a study on water security in the Middle East. This study is formally supported by the governments of Sweden and Switzerland and several other governments have offered their support informally.
In the course of its research, SFG drafted a set of five pertinent questions for each of the countries involved in the study. The questions pertain mainly to ‘sustainable’ and ‘collaborative’ water solutions that could help mitigate a future water shortage crisis in the Middle East. The idea is to engage experts and people knowledgeable in this field, in order to gain their perspectives and opinions on the subject.
In this particular segment, SFG and Green Prophet deal in particular with Israel’s water situation and how it relates to larger regional water issues. We have posed five questions to academics, policy-makers and activists in Israel and collated their respective responses. We welcome you to participate in the discussion and share information and viewpoints that will enrich the dialogue on water in the Middle East. The idea is to promote a positive forum for communication, so that regional leaders will eventually be able to see eye-to-eye in order to solve imminent water problems shared by all.
SFG will take the comments received here into account while formulating its report. SFG and Green Prophet will also be disseminating the blog link to partners, contacts and associates.
We look forward to your comments and suggestions. For further information on SFG and the work that we do please visit: www.strategicforesight.com
Image credit: Green Prophet, 2009.