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Something to brag about?

September 2, 2007

 

Ein Avdat National Park, Negev, Israel

Today Haaretz published an article citing new figures from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources which declared that Israel had the highest percentage of land dedicated to nature reserves in the Mediterranean Basin:

According to IUCN figures, the protected area in Israel constitutes 16 percent of the country’s total area, as opposed to 11.7 percent in France, 7.7 percent in Spain, and 0.5 percent in Lebanon.

A protected open space consists of nature reserves, national parks, farmlands and forested areas. The numbers confirm that Israel has successfully allocated extensive areas to nature conservation.

But as Haaretz points out, while Israel does have extensive nature reserves throughout the country, many are used by the military – which doesn’t exactly mean peaceful living for nature reserve inhabitants. And what about the amount of trash littered across the landscape?

We say thumbs up to Israel’s recognition of the need to preserve natural areas. But thumbs down to Israel’s inability to fully preserve and keep them safe.

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