‘We came here to redeem a land and we end up contaminating it’: Israel’s pollution problem in Palestine

‘We came here to redeem a land and we end up contaminating it’: Israel’s pollution problem in Palestine
As the occupier, Israel has obligations both to the people and environment, under international law. It is time that the world and its courts step up the pressure and hold Israel accountable, writes Charlie Jaay

“It’s a Zionist paradox. We came here to redeem a land and we end up contaminating it.”Alon Tal, founder of the Israel Union for Environmental Defence.

Palestina is a small but critical part of the Fertile Crescent. With its rich soil and Mediterranean climate, this Middle Eastern country is considered to be the Cradle of Civilisation, the area where plants and animals were first domesticated, approximately 10,000 anos atrás, allowing humans to settle, and civilisation to develop.

Its unique position between Europe, Asia and Africa, and diverse range of habitats, has made occupied Palestine a designated Mediterranean Biodiversity Hotspot. According to the Environment Quality Authority, it has around 3 per cent of global biodiversity, and is an important centre of genetic diversity for a wide range of crops – wild ancestors of wheat, barley, vines, olives, onions and pulses, can all be found here.

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