- Middle East and USA Sister City Partnerships launched
- In advance of the Donors' Conference in Cairo next week: EcoPeace / FoEME is releasing a Report on the Gaza Water, Sanitation and Energy Crisis
- The Israeli Government Decided Not to Decide
- Israeli Attorney General recommends that Government build Separation Barrier through Battir
- A new Israeli and Jordanian cooperation project
- Battir registered as World Heritage Site in Danger
- Pope Francis' visit to Jordan, the Holy Land and the JORDAN RIVER
- Israeli Military Removes Sulfuric Acid as Banned Substance
- Earth Day 2014 - Focus on Advancing Middle East Water Solutions
- Water and Middle East Peace on World Water Day 2014
- Following Comments on Water by President of EU: Clarifications by FoEME
- Israeli High Court of Justice on Battir: Issue is complex, need additional respondents
- WATER CANNOT WAIT campaign launch
- A conventional desalination project with a regional "water exchange" aspect is being signed today; NOT the Red Dead Canal
- Swedish Minister Concludes a Visit to the Mouth of the Jordan River and South Shuna
- International and Regional Water and Policy Experts Agreed: Trans-boundary Water Issues Can No Longer Wait
- Representatives of 3 Religions Sign on a Jordan River Covenant: 'Rehabilitate the Jordan River'
- Battir's Ancient Irrigated Landscape Declared an Endangered Cultural Site on the World Monument Fund's 2014 'Watch List'
- Rehabilitation of the Jordan River crucial for Water Security in the Middle East
- Israeli High Court of Justice Orders Israeli Military to Halt Building of Separation Wall in Battir
- Project ENTITLE up and running
- FoEME at World Water Day in the Hague
- Better Dead Than Red
- Friends of the Earth Middle East ranked in TOP 100 NGO's
- Epiphany Celebrations - Economic Benefits Lost from Rivers Dire State
- World Bank Study Irresponsible - Conclusions Do Not Match the Findings
- High Court Accepts the Petition of FoEME Against the Separation Barrier in Battir
- Israel Nature & Parks Authority in Response to FoEME Petition Against the Separation Barrier in Battir
- Route of Separation Barrier Threatens to Destroy Shared Palestinian / Israeli Cultural Landscape Site
- FoEME's response to Minister Shalom on the Red Dead Canal project
- FoEME's Response to the French Parliament's Report
- Israeli & Palestinian Ministers Agree on the Need to Reexamine the Operation and Structure of the Joint Water Committee
- Funeral for the Dead Sea
- FoEME awarded Mt. Zion Foundation Award
- Peacemakers Honored with Outstanding Leadership Award
- Water Justice Cannot Wait
- A $45 Million Investment in Hebron Waste Water Treatment Plant
- FoEME and Save our Sea Joint Event - A Mass Float in the Dead Sea
- In Response to the Israeli Government promotion of Dead Sea 7 World Wonders (Hebrew)
- We demand a Nuclear Free Zone in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East
- FoEME youth release joint river song for International Day of Action for Rivers
- Israeli Knesset Committee calls for the Jordan River’s Rehabilitation to be a project of national priority
- A Model Water Agreement between Israel and the PA
- FoEME wins ARISTOTLE ONASSIS PRIZE FOR THE PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT
- FoEME statement in response to 'Anti-Normalization Committee' Press Release
- European Parliament passes historic resolution in support of regional rehabilitation of the Lower Jordan River
- FoEME wins EURO-MED DIALOGUE AWARD
- Big Jump 2010
Friends of the Earth Middle East Response to Statement of Israeli Civil Administration
as Regards Baptism at the Qasr el Yehud Site on the Lower Jordan River
- EcoPeace / Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME) calls on regional authorities to halt baptism in the Lower Jordan River until water quality standards for tourism activities are met
- FoEME to present the Jordan River Rehabilitation Project at the EU Parliament
- Credibility of World Bank at Stake on Red-Dead Conduit Study
- Two new reports on the Lower Jordan River released today
- Cut the Rhetoric: Don't hold water hostage to the Middle East conflict
- Vrede in Midden-Oosten afhankelijk van water
- Israeli Dead Sea Works calls for an additional evaporation pond - corporate cynicism at its worst?
- 15 Years Since Historical Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty
- Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian activists issue a unified call for climate change solutions on largest international day of climate change action
- FoEME calls for Assurances for Palestinian Access to West Bank Baptism Site and Rehabilitation of the Lower Jordan River
- Dead Sea Subject to Cheap Politics
- Water Being Held Hostage to the Conflict
- EcoPeace / Friends of the Earth Middle East Receives Skoll Foundation Social Entrepreneurship Award
- EcoPeace / FoEME calls for an Immediate Cessation of Violence and for UNEP to Assess the Environmental Damages of the Conflict
- FoEME Calls Upon Our Governments to Meet Their Commitments to Rehabilitate the Lower Jordan River
- FoEME Side Event at Euro Med Water Conference
- Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian Mayors meet to discuss the Regional Water Crisis
- FoEME honored by TIME Magazine as Heroes of the Environment 2008
- World Bank Conducting Less Than Professional Feasibility Study
- Red Dead Canal Launch 'Outrageously Irresponsible'
- Yale University to work with Jordanian, Palestinian and Israeli Architects in Creating Ideas for First Peace Park
- Jordan and Palestine Threatened by Global Warming
- Middle East faces security threats from global warming
- Regional Mayors Gathering on Cross Border Eco-Tourism
- World Bank to hold public hearing on Red Dead Canal
- Israeli / Palestinian Mayors sign on MoU
- Big Jump! into the Jordan River
- Gaza Strip - impending sanitation crisis with stoppage of fuel supply
- Jordan River Declared a World Endangered Cultural Heritage Site
- Climate Change May Further Erode Political Stability in the Middle East
- Failure to Cooperate on the Environment Kills
- Israeli Cabinet Decision on Red Dead Canal Irresponsible
- Save the Judean Desert
- Joint Planting Ceremony for Tu Bishvat in Tsur Hadassah / Wadi Fukin
- Jordanian / Israeli Cooperation at Southern Dead Sea
- Jordanian, Israeli Mayors Sign on Cross Border Agreement
- Environmental Issue Overrides Outdated IDF Decision
- Kayaking down the last stretch of clean water in the River Jordan
- Jordan River Mayors Commit To Water Cooperation
- World Bank Acting Contrary to Bank Guidelines Concerning Red Dead Study
- Israelis need to know environmental costs of war with Hezbollah
- The Separation Barrier in Wadi Fukin
- World Water Monitoring Day
- Lebanon Asks UNEP to Assess Environmental Damage of War
- Environmental Damage of Hezbollah-Israel War
- FoEME is Calling on All Parties to Immediately Cease the Use of Force
- Lebanese Oil Spill
- FoEME Calls on Both Sides to End Gaza Crisis
- Jordanians & Israelis Meet IN the Waters of the Lower Jordan River
- Friends of the Earth Middle East awarded ENERGY GLOBE PRIZE
- FoEME Calls on Quartet not to Stop Funding of Pollution Prevention Projects
- DEAD SEA - Declared Threatened Lake of the Year, 2006
- 700 Million Cubic Meters of Drinking Water Threatened by Pollution
- Ancient Agricultural Terraces Threatened By Settlement
- Egged Invites FoEME-Jordan to Ceremony
World Bank Study Irresponsible - Conclusions Do Not Match the Findings
World Bank Study Irresponsible - Conclusions Do Not Match the Findings
The 'Red Dead Canal' project idea has wasted a decade for the Dead Sea
January 16, 2013
A draft set of reports of the World Bank that was released last weekend confirm that it is time to finally bury the idea of the "Red Dead Conduit" project once and for all. The World Bank report is irresponsible as the conclusions drawn ignore the environmental risks and the high economic price to pay.
“If this project were to go forward, the real beneficiaries would be Israeli business tycoons associated with the building of the largest desalination plant in the world, and foreign pipeline construction companies. The public would be the ones to foot the bill, twice over – once, in unaffordable water prices, and again, in the further demise of the environment, said Gidon Bromberg, Israeli Director of Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME).
During the more than 10 years that the World Bank has been studying the idea of the Red Dead Conduit, the Dead Sea has only continued to decline - by more than 15 meters. “This was a wasted 10 years for the Dead Sea. Instead of dealing with the root cause of the problem and the real reason for the shrinking of the Sea – the diversion of the Jordan River and the unlimited use of Dead Sea waters by the Mineral Industries – attention was instead placed squarely on this pipe dream project,” said Nader Khateeb, Palestinian Director of FoEME.
The final draft of the feasibility report confirms that the Red Dead project's dangers include turning the Dead Sea into a sea of red algae blooms and milky white gypsum formations, polluting with sea water the ground water in the Araba / Arava Valley, as well as negative impacts on the coral reefs in Eilat and Aqaba. The project study also established that the project suffers from a severe negative energy balance requiring up to two new power stations to be built in Jordan, to both pump marine water towards the Dead Sea, and the desalinated water over a 1000 meters up to Jordan’s capital Amman.
The so-called 'pilot project', as supported by Israel's Minister of Regional Cooperation, Silvan Shalom, was dismissed as not feasible. According to the authors of the feasibility study, the only viable implementation of the project would be to build half the project all at once – resulting in possible irreversible damage to the environment.
The study states that the pipeline project is feasible economically, however, in the finer print, it explains that the economic viability of the project is dependent on international grants of $5 billion USD, in addition to Jordan raising $2.5 billion dollars in loans for associated water infrastructure delivery costs to Amman. Only if these 2 conditions are met, will the private sector then invest the remaining $2.6 billion dollars needed for the construction of desalination plants.
“The study seems to forget that there is a global economic crisis, that Jordan is on the verge of bankruptcy, and that Israel is heavily in the red. The study also ignores the fact that a cubic meter of water from this project would cost up to $2.7 in Jordan; an impossible expense for Jordanians to pay, that will lead to riots in the streets. Similarly, for Israelis and Palestinians, the water from this project will cost $1.8 per cubic meter, more than triple the cost of desalination at the Mediterranean,” said Munqeth Mehyar, Jordanian Director of FoEME.
“The World Bank authors of the feasibility study based the economic feasibility of the project on the loss of tourism from the current fall in Dead Sea waters, but conveniently ignore that a Dead Sea full of algae growth and milky white gypsum, as a result of the proposed conduit, would be the death blow for tourism at the Dead Sea” continued Bromberg.
Authors of the World Bank 'Alternatives Study' believe that there are indeed alternative measures that can meet the goals of stabilizing the Dead Sea, providing water to the region, and promoting regional cooperation. The alternative study identifies the need to advance water reform in the region that would combine the partial rehabilitation of the River Jordan and have the Israeli Dead Sea Works and the Jordanian Arab Potash company pay for the water they extract from the Dead Sea – which would give them an incentive to reduce their harmful impacts on the Dead Sea.
The wasted decade surely reinforces the urgency on the need to move forward with sustainable solutions, and ones that tackle the root causes of the problem.
Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME) is a unique organization that brings together Jordanian, Palestinian, and Israeli environmentalists. Our primary objective is the promotion of cooperative efforts to protect our shared environmental heritage. FoEME has studied the idea of the Red Dead Canal and has been monitoring the issue for the past decade.
For more information, please contact Gidon Bromberg, Israeli Director, at 052-4532597, firstname.lastname@example.org