The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MoEP) and the Jewish National Fund (JNF) will soon subsidize the installation of particulate filters on 500 garbage trucks throughout Israel. The two entities are beginning a NIS 10 million tender process, which will result in a 97% reduction of soot particle emissions.

Israel’s refuse trucks are diesel-fueled, and characterized by frequent starts and stop. This results in increased emission of pollutants into the air in residential neighborhoods and near population enters.

The aim of the project is to help reduce air pollution from diesel vehicles, and to improve air quality in urban centers. The new filters to be installed on garbage trucks are expected reduce by 97% emissions of toxic soot particles emitted by diesel engines, which have been defined by the World Health Organization as a human carcinogen.

The project is being implemented within the framework of an agreement between the State of Israel and the JNF, signed in November 2015, dealing with JNF debts. Under terms of the pact, a "Committee for National Initiatives" will provide for the transfer of JNF funds to the MoEP, for environmental projects. Altogether, the JNF will pay some NIS 400 million for projects aimed at reducing air pollution, energy efficiency, and improving the quality of life in Israel – especially in the periphery. In March, the project began with another tender process, to subsidize the purchase of at least 50 electric buses and necessary infrastructure.

MoEP Director General Yisrael Dancziger: "We will continue to act decisively against polluting transportation, which is a major source of risk to public health. Installing particulate filters in garbage trucks is another step in the program we are promoting to create clean air zones in city centers. This program includes restricting the movement of polluting vehicles."

JNF Chairman Danny Atar: "This is another important step to Israel becoming a cleaner and healthier country. JNF’s has defined for itself a goal to lead a green revolution, and together with the MoEP, to provide a good quality of life for residents of both the center and the periphery of Israel. Our approach is that maintaining a green Israel for all its citizens is a Zionist act of the first order."

The MoEP is working with local authorities throughout Israel to create so-called "low-emission zones" in city centers, where the movement of polluting vehicles will be restricted. Similar zones already exist in hundreds of cities in Europe. The final phase of the program’s implementation will be to limit the entrance of polluting vehicles into city centers in several cities in Israel. The program will motivate drivers, businesses, public transportation companies, and owners of vehicle fleets to install particulate filters in old vehicles.