About a decade ago Israelis were much better at green washing and consumerism than caring for our planet through social green action. That’s all changed. The country has leaped into putting environmental awareness at the top of people’s concerns. This year there are dozens of events going on around the country to celebrate April 22, as Earth Day. Jerusalem boasts the world’s first Green Pilgrim’s conference, and our Miriam will be there reporting. The festivities kick off tonight April 21 with a gala event.
Other events worth noting in Jerusalem is the Cool Globes public art exhibit on the Mamilla Esplanade which portrays large globe structures and new solutions for climate change (see in photo above). The globes will stay on display throughout the summer, unless of course they melt in the hot Israeli sun.
Meanwhile there will be free concerts linked to the pilgrim’s event which is bringing faith leaders from around the world to unite for the green cause. Jerusalem’s deputy mayor Naomi Tsur reasons that if 80 percent of the world identifies with some version of faith, the faith message should be a big part of sustainable tourism to Jerusalem, Israel and other holy land countries.
Also in Jerusalem at the Mamilla esplanade (which Jesse is not fond of as a shopping destination!) will be the Israeli version of the Green Passport project, teaching travellers and tourists to be more respectful to the environment they are in.
The Old City walls will be lit by solar power in a shade of green, and thanks to ecocinema a movie on Israel’s plants and animals will be projected on the walls.
And generally speaking, just a regular walk inside the Old City where life has gone as usual for millennia is a sustainable green act.
Tourists unbeknown to Earth Day are in for a serious educational experience this year from Israel!