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“The Polluter Must Advertise”

December 23, 2009

A great achievement from Zalul:

The Sea Spillage Permit Committee officially adopts “The Polluter Must Advertise”

Starting December 22, 2009 every plant that receives a discharge permit will be required to publish the conditions of the permit in the media.

On December 21, 2009 the Sea Spillage Permit Committee officially adopted a policy now formally known as the “Polluter Must Advertise” as a result of Zalul’s work during the last two years to persuade the Environment Ministry and the Committtee for greater transparency for permits.

This policy is in addition to the permits that are already posted in a database on the Environmental Protection Ministry’s website. Following the publication of Zalul’s State of the Sea report two years ago, this new requirement provides more accessibility for the public about the nature of the pollution and the location of the discharge. In addition, this policy will allow for public criticism of the work of the Committee and the Ministry of the Environment who give out the permits and also those who engage in polluting activities.

According to the new policy, starting on December 22, 2009 every factory that receives a discharge permit to the sea from the Committee will be required to adhere to public transparency by advertising the conditions of the permit in the newspapers. The advertising will be done one month upon receipt of the permit. The format for the advertisement will be published in accordance with a specific format and consist of the following:

•The permit will be published in both a national and a local newspaper (in the area relevant to the discharge).

•The size of the advertisement will be 4×4 inches.

•The advertisement will contain the flow rate and location of discharge in font size 12.

•The advertisement will be listed on the Ministry of the Environment’s website where all details will be displayed in font size 12.

•The advertisement will contain the name of the owner of the permit in font size 11.

•The recipient may request an exemption from advertising a permit from the Committee.

•Advertising will be done within one month of receiving the actual permit.

•The advertiser will deliver a copy of said advertisement in the form of a press release to the Ministry of the Environment’s Marine and Coastal Division.

According to Zalul, this is another important step in the process of environmental transparency for the public. Zalul welcomes the Committee’s decision to adopt the advertising policy for permits after many years in which polluting factories dumped sewage into the sea without any public advisory or obligation.

According to Ezer Fischler, Assistant Director of Zalul, “Now every resident of Israel can be informed via the newspaper about the factories discharging effluent to the sea in their area. The time has come for the recipients of the permits to be accountable to the public and to stop hiding the damage they cause to the sea.”

Appendix:

This page was published about pollution as passed by the Zalul Environmental Association and Sea Spillage Permit Committee members

July 6, 2009

Repair Policy No 2.4 – Policy for terrestrial sources

This policy, also known as “The Polluter Must Advertise,” was designed to create a reporting mechanism that will reveal to the public the identities of those who contaminate our sea with effluent and the location of where they discharge. The procedure enforces mandatory publication of information about effluent that is discharged into the sea through simple advertising. The advertising is designed to expose the public with details on the information. This will become available in the written press. The importance in the procedure lies in the number of reasons as follows:

  1. Increasing citizen access to information that is relevant important information that concerns both public health and the environment will be accessible to the public. Since access to the information creates awareness, citizens will become more active for the environment.
  2. Fostering environmental awareness –developing a public awareness to the issue of sea pollution can be an effective way of creating visible and hidden pressure on polluting factories to stop the pollution and invest money in using advanced technology to find a clean solution to this problem.
  3. Promoting the principle of transparency – The framework of the procedure will break the silence that the factories have been benefiting from. The new procedure is doing all it can to reduce the amount of wastewater and/or improve the quality of the water.
  4. Exposure of the polluters to public criticism – Naturally, a factory’s name will be listed if they contaminated the streams and/or the sea; it can be assumed that the factory that sells to the Israeli public is responsible for the pollution of the sea. This will be an incentive to work harder to promote the best possible solutions for sewage treatment and to cope with public concern.
  5. Minimal financial costs – The proposed procedure is not technical and does not impose high financial costs on permit holders or the Ministry of the Environment.
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