IDF Nature and Environment Awareness Week

IDF (Zahal) Spokesperson

During the week, unique events and educational activities will take place throughout the IDF (Zahal)

Date: 28/06/2009, 5:22 PM     Author: Na’ama Rak

The IDF (Zahal) Nature and Environment Awareness Week will open on Sunday (June 28) and will be concluded on Thursday (July 2). The purpose of the week is to raise awareness among IDF (Zahal) soldiers and commanders on the importance of preserving nature, and through that encourage them to develop a sense of responsibility for protecting the environment and the heritage sites around the places they serve at.

Apart from educational activities on the subject, which will be held throughout IDF (Zahal) units, a number of unique events will take place during the Nature and Environment Awareness Week. The central event that will take place is the Environment Protection Conference on Sunday (June 28), which is organized by the head of the Infrastructure and Deployment Department of the Planning Directorate. The conference will be held at the facilities of the Council for a Beautiful Israel, on the banks of the Yarkon. In additiona, on Monday (June 29), a seminar on the topic of the water crisis will be held at the same place. On Tuesday (June 30), the IDF (Zahal) and the Environment – Legal and Financial Aspects Seminar will take place at the law school located at the Tzrifin military base, and on Wednesday (July 1), a seminary on environmental design will be held at the Air Force Building in Herzliya. The last day of the Nature and Environment Awareness Week will be dedicated to the protection of historical sites; as part of this day, a seminar on the topic will be held at Beit Guvrin near Kiryat Gat, under the supervision of the head of the Planning Directorate, Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel. In addition to that, educational trips to different historical sites will be organized for various IDF (Zahal) units, in cooperation with the Israel Antiquities Authority.

An additional activity, which will not be carried during this week but still considered part of the project, is the annual Environmental Protection Competition. The competition praises the inventiveness and innovation regarding environmental protection in the IDF (Zahal) and will award prizes according to three central categories: the general category, the environmental education and protection category, and the Personal Protection Prize, which is awarded this year to four IDF (Zahal) officers and NCOs for personal promotion and innovation of environmental protection. In addition, the candidates of the “IDF (Zahal) In the Eye of the Camera 2008/09” photography competition will be displayed at an official exhibition.

The 22 participants in the Environmental Protection Competition prove that the IDF (Zahal) constantly operates with consideration for the environment. The different units of the Technological and Logistics Directorate are constantly working on new ideas, new systems, new products and teaching material regarding the protection of the environment. This work is also reflected by the list of participants in the Environmental Protection Competition, since eight of them belong to the Technological and Logistics Directorate.

One of the Technological and Logistics Directorate units organizing a lot of environmental projects is the Fuel Center. One of its projects is the adoption of environmental community schools in the city of Gadera, an initiative of Commander of the Fuel Center, Col. Avi Harel. The center’s soldiers took part in different activities of the schools, and also helped with various projects regarding the environment. For example: energy saving, recycling of paper and bottles, and the production of compost. The center also established an organic garden together with the schools. Another project the Fuel Center started is the collection and recycling of oil and fuel, in order to prevent soil and water pollution.