Jordan River Peace Park goes 3-D:
One of EcoPeace's greatest visions is the creation of a transbounday Peace Park on the Jordan River, to expand what is today the "Peace Island", and to include the surrounding areas in Israel and Jordan. On the site was once a hydroelectric power plant that back in the 1930's and 1940's, supplied electricity to Northern Jordan and Mandate Palestine. EcoPeace has identified outstanding potential here for the development of ecotourism that would provide much-needed jobs in the area, as well as opportunities for biodiversity protection, cooperative management, joint research programs, education and collaboration on nature-based tourism.
This month, a group of Swiss professors came to the region to do hi-tech 3-D scans of the site ahead of a student Design Studio scheduled for next year. Another step forward for the proposed Peace Park!
Women of Faith visit the Lower Jordan River
This month, EcoPeace staff gave a presentation and then a tour of the Lower Jordan River for a group of Jewish, Muslim and Christian women involved in the Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development Women's Faith & Ecology program. The importance of the rehabilitation of the River Jordan was presented in a multi-faith perspective as part of EcoPeace's efforts to advance the creation of larger stakeholder circles supporting the rehabilitation of the Lower Jordan River.
Sites visited on the tour included the Kaser el Yehud Baptism site, the Dir Hijla Monastery, and the (Northern tip) of the Dead Sea, also greatly affected by the demise of the River. Participants eagerly endorsed the Jordan River Covenant, a visionary document which both highlights the degradation of the valley and expresses our vision of a healthy, living river. Read more about our faith-based advocacy campaign here.
EcoPeace's Israeli Director and Jordanian Assistant Director presented at the 8th International Conference on Tourism organized by the Kinneret Academic College. After an overall introduction with examples from around the world about tourism and peace, they discussed how the implementation of EcoPeace’s Regional NGO Master Plan will open up the region, attract tourism, bring more prosperity and abundance to the Jordan River Valley and advance peace.
World Bank Visits Jordan Valley
EcoPeace, Jordan Valley Regional Council members, and representatives of the Kinneret and Lower Jordan River Drainage Authorities gave World Bank representatives a tour of the Israeli side of the Jordan Valley on January 15th to better understand and visualize projects proposed in our Jordan Valley Regional NGO Master Plan. These types of tours help give international stakeholders a better understanding of the plight of the Jordan River but also the concrete positive change that has taken place in the past decade!
EcoPeace's Jordan River Rehabilitation Project, including faith-based activities, are supported by the Swedish International Development Agency and the Osprey Foundation.