The top 65 ways Israel is saving our planet

Since 1948, Israel has set itself a task of finding creative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems. To celebrate Israel’s 65th birthday, ISRAEL21c looks at some of the best achievements.

A member of IsraAid helping out local residents in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Photo courtesy of IsraAID.

A member of IsraAid helping out local residents in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Photo courtesy of IsraAID.

42. Israel is the world-recognized leader in raising therapeutic clowning to the level of a standardized, research-backed healthcare discipline. Its internationally renowned Dream Doctors Project has trained and placed nearly 100 practitioners at 22 hospitals in Israel. Dream Doctors worked with the University of Haifa to establish the world’s only academic degree program in clown therapy as a paramedical profession. Much of the groundbreaking research on the measurable effects of medical clowning is being done in Israel and shared in international forums.

43. Water-purification technologies developed in Israel to recycle the country’s limited water resources are now being used to help save India’s sacred Noyyal River.

The 160-kilometer Noyyal River once provided water for around 20,000 acres of rich agricultural land, but toxic waste from textile factories has choked the river, destroying local agriculture and wildlife, and polluting groundwater in more than 95 villages in the region.

The Indians are using Israeli-developed nano-filtration to remove dissolved pollutants. Israeli desalination expert, BGU Prof. Yoram Oren, is spearheading the effort.

44. Earlier this month, Israel set up a field hospital along its border with Syria to treat Syrians wounded in the country’s bloody civil war. Though Syria is an enemy nation, Israeli army medics have been treating dozens of wounded Syrian civilians at the makeshift hospital and in past months Israeli hospitals have treated refugee Syrians as well. According to the UN, about 1.2 million Syrians have been internally displaced, and hundreds of thousands of refugees have fled to neighboring countries.

45. Rambam Healthcare Campus in Haifa runs a yearly trauma-care training course for participants from Africa, South America and the Far East in cooperation with Israel’s Foreign Ministry. The medical center also offers fellowships to African doctors specializing in areas including plastic surgery, pediatrics and AIDS, funded by partners such as MASHAV, the Foreign Ministry, international NGOs and the host countries.

46. Israeli engineers and medical specialists have erected a state-of-the-art emergency room in Kisumu, Kenya, servicing a population of six million. The facility, at the Kisumu East District Hospital, was built in less than a month and is the hospital’s first fully-equipped ER. It will be a center for both regional emergency treatment and professional training.

The effort was led by MASHAV, which has been working in Kenya since the 1950s, when it set up ophthalmology field clinics. Since then, the organization is also involved in projects on food security, health, education and empowerment of women.

47. Israel’s Galten Global Alternative Energy has developed a method of obtaining biofuel from the seeds of the jatropha, a plant that doesn’t compete with food crops. Plantings have already begun in Ghana. Currently only one ton of biofuel can be extracted from 2.5 acres of edible crops such as corn or soybeans, whereas three tons of biofuel can be produced from the same amount of soil growing jatropha plants.

48. The Hadassah Medical Organization works in coordination with the Israel Foreign Ministry and other Israeli agencies on a range of humanitarian projects around the world including a volunteer HIV/AIDS education and treatment program in Ethiopia and Kazakhstan; eye surgery for needy African patients; adult male circumcision for HIV prevention in Africa; and public health education in Kathmandu.

Hadassah medical personnel have also participated in Israeli rescue operations around the world since 1960. Among the disaster scenes where they’ve brought critical care expertise are Armenia, Turkey, Greece, Haiti, Sri Lanka, Nairobi and Tanzania. Recently, the government of Panama hired Hadassah as a consultant to build a state-of-the-art trauma unit there.

49. In November 2012, the IDF and MADA sent rescue and medical personnel to help when a shopping mall collapsed in the Ghanaian capital of Accra. The IDF group consisted of 18 healthcare workers, engineers and communication experts to assist in the rescue operation. MADA sent another delegation of doctors, paramedics and emergency medical personnel to set up a field hospital.

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About Nicky Blackburn

Editor and Israel Director, Nicky Blackburn has worked extensively as a journalist and editor both in Britain and Israel for a range of national and international publications including The Cambridge Evening News, London News, Travel Weekly, Israel High Tech Investor, and The Times of London. She was the Associate Editor at LINK Israel’s Business and Technology Magazine, and the High-Tech Correspondent for The Jerusalem Post.
  • http://www.facebook.com/bernie.harland Bernie Harland

    It’s a great shame that the world doesn’t recognise that these brilliant works aren’t publicized or recognized lots more instead of negative response best part of the time

  • http://www.facebook.com/edi.stadler.7 Edi Stadler

    Wow, I didn’t know that Israel was so progressive. Thank you for this wonderful article.

  • disqus_U1UZ3IAD3B

    great work Nicky loved the story love the people love the country live from Super Natural British Columbia the 2nd greatest place to live in the world

  • Amos Leitner

    Please also list “Tevel B’Zedek” who does exemplary work both in Haiti and in Nepal

  • Mary opiyo

    Prof berta sivan that was a great achievement. Proud of you.

  • Anti-Zionist

    ISreal saving the planet. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

    I nominate this for the joke of the week. BTW, I wonder what the Palestinians have to say about all the magnificent ways in which it is “saving” the planet. Not to mention American tax-paying suckers. This right here is the personification of hubris and delusion. But keep on plowing Chosenites, the truth shall set the rest of us free.

  • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.berger.148116 Daniel Berger

    ccWITT TECHNOLOGY (www.witt-energy-solutions.com) DOES BETTER THAN ANY OF THESE 65!!!

    WITT OFFERS THE WORLD ENERGY INDEPENDENCE, BY GENERATING ENERGY FROM ANY TYPE OF MOTION!!!

    WITT TECHNOLOGY IS AVAILABLE FROM THE MOSLEM, HINDU, JEWISH, MIDDLE EAST ISRAEL GREEN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE!!!

    OUR CHAMBER ALSO HAS $25 A BARREL, NORTH SEA QUALITY ALGAE CRUDE OIL;

    CARBON FIBER, HYBRID ELECTRIC HYPERCARS THAT GET 240/KM FOR 4 LITERS OF FUEL

    SEWAGE TO DRINKINKING WATER TECHNOLOGY

    PASSIVE SOLAR ENERGY THAT USES PHASE CHANGE SALTS THAT ALLOW FURNITURE, WINDOWS AND WALLS GENERATE ENERGY

    FUSION NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY, AND A LOT MORE!!!

    WHY IS IT THAT ONLY THE EPIC TIMES OF JERUSALEM HAS GIVEN NEWS COVERAGE TO OUR CHAMBERS WORK.

    MASS MEDIA OUTLETS IN ISRAEL SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    NEITHER MARSHALL McLUHAN NOR EDWARD MURROW OR WALTER CRONKITE,OR HUNTLEY BRINKLEY WOULD CONDON SUCH LAZY JOURNALISM

  • Akhabue

    Thank you Israel. You are a blessing to the World.
    Bereshit – Genesis Chapter 12
    Now HaShem said unto Abram: ‘Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto the land that I will show thee.
    2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and be thou a blessing.
    3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I curse; and in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed.’
    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Bible/Genesis12.html

  • Akhabue

    Bereshit – Genesis Chapter 12
    1 Now HaShem said unto Abram: ‘Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto the land that I will show thee.
    2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and be thou a blessing.
    3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I curse; and in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed.’
    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Bible/Genesis12.html

  • http://www.facebook.com/zgadjanski Zoran Gadjanski

    Now, if you would be so kind and find a country for Palestinians.

  • thefifthcolumnreport

    Israel is a remarkable country and Israelis are a remarkable people. Imagine how much better off humankind would be if they embraced and supported Israel and its people?

  • http://twitter.com/MikiZBell miki bell

    ongrats to Israel’s 65th, I was there dancing all night 65 years ago. Keep on doing the good that you do to better humanity.Stay safe

  • http://twitter.com/MikiZBell miki bell

    I mean Congratulations to Israel, may you stay safe, prosperous and productive. My web site is:www.mikizbell.com

  • http://www.facebook.com/sabina.shalom Sabina Shalom

    Not
    only am I filled with pride,awe and enormous admiration and respect for all
    that I have read and seen, I am also filled with a deep and searing angst that
    Israel’s magnificence goes so largely unacknowledged world wide. With so
    many brilliant minds, how is it that the media does not seem to have been
    sufficiently encouraged (or approached) to show at least some of Israel’s
    miraculous

    achievements
    especially as they are designed for world-wide use and adoption.

    Ignorance,
    lack of knowledge and understanding continue to undermine Israel’s superb
    achievements. This must be remedied – propaganda, promotion, influential
    names, companies, every source to be contacted. Ambassadors of goodwill, eloquent speakers,
    all should be touring the Nations with these incredibly wonderful films,
    documentaries and such personal stories filled with the continuing human
    outreach that Israel
    extends to the entire world.

    These
    wonderful, beautiful films, make me smile and make me cry. But it is not tears that effect change. One does not need to convince the convinced,
    though it does not harm to remind the Jewish people of our duty and our
    obligations. It is the earnest attempts to rectify a
    situation. To bring that Light unto the
    Nations to shine more brightly and widely across this blessed earth upon which
    we the Jewish people were destined to serve.

    Sabina
    Shalom

    http://www.sabinashalom.com

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lenya-Biyat/100001956420493 Lenya Biyat

    Bless Israel. A light unto all nations.