Israel’s participation at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), now being held in Paris, is more an opportunity for important political networking. Though Israel is a relatively small contributor to climate change, her geographic location makes her highly sensitive to the potential impacts of climate change on almost all aspects of life, including: water, public health, agriculture, energy, biodiversity, coastal infrastructure, natural disasters, national security and more.
Addressing the convention, Prime Minister Netanyahu stressed that Israel understands “the distress and the need to have a global solution. Many initiatives have been brought forward during this conference and elsewhere, and I want to say first that Israel is committed to those goals and will act accordingly, in deed and in word to fulfill them.” Netanyahu also highlighted that “last year Israel was ranked number one in the Global Clean-Tech Innovation Index. We are a world leader in making the use of water more efficient, therefore more energy efficient. Israel is the number one recycler of water in the world. It has the highest ratio of water efficiency in the world. My office,” he said, “has launched an initiative to reduce global dependence on crude oil, especially in transportation, by establishing Israel as a global leader in the search for alternative fuels.”
Under a binding agreement on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Israel has committed to reduce per capita greenhouse gas emissions to 7.7 tCO2e (tons of carbon dioxide equivalent) by 2030. This constitutes a reduction of 26% below the 2005 GHG emissions level. These reductions will come from sectors such as: electricity, industry, transportation, residential and commercial buildings, waste and agriculture.
The Israeli delegation to Paris, numbering about 70 members, includes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Environmental Protection Minister Avi Gabbay and Director General Yisrael Dancziger, Members of Knesset, government officials, members of environmental NGOs, industry representatives and more.
Israel is actively involved in this convention, having organized, among other things, workshops on deforestation, renewable energies and the use of alternative refrigerants.