The Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry’s national cleantech promotion program has launched a new initiative meant to promote cleantech initiatives worldwide.
The new tool in the ministry’s kit is an app that showcases the projects from development to application stages, in a manner that allows potential investors to see Israeli innovations at work.
The companies themselves can use the app as one of their marketing tools.
The “CleanTech in the making” map, created by Israel NewTech – the national program aimed at promoting Israel’s water and sustainable energy sectors – seeks to present investors with the Israeli industries achievements on water, agriculture, renewable and sustainable energy and the environment.
Israel NewTech’s Facebook application has already gotten over 2,000 visitors, mostly from the United States and India.
The maps are fully interactive, and according to Adi Yefet Beeri of Israel NewTech, it was created “as a marketing tool meant to highlight the Israeli industries’ capabilities and the fact that they are world leaders in their fields.”
Another app, called “Mapped in Israel,” includes, so far, 907 Israeli start-up companies, the majority of which are from the cleantech and greentech industries.
“It was important to me to illustrate how Israel is a real start-up nation,” Ben Lang, a young developer who came up with the app, told Ynet. “It will help investors see what their next investment could be, not just read about it.”
The Israel Union for Environmental Defense has launched a new online venture meant to offer eco-conscious Israelis comprehensive information that could help them practice environmental responsibility.
The website – Svivati (“my environment”) offers users detailed information about recycling centers, air and water pollution, cellular antennas’ location, threats to open spaces and various environmental hazards.
The website also offers information about the location of urban green lungs , public parks, beaches and their accessibility to the public.
Yael Dori of Israel Union for Environmental Defense, who serves as the website’s administrator, explains that the website is the result of months of information gathering from government ministries, local authorities, the Israel Nature and National Parks Service and various other green groups.
The information was then screened and verified by the group’s legal department, and while some areas still lack in full information, the website in currently the most comprehensive of its kind.
The website is based on a geographic information system (GIS), which is designed to capture, store, analyze and manage various layers of geographical data. It allows users to “build” the layers according to the desired information.
For example: The menu for the “Air, Energy and Radiation” category allows users to add layers like “air pollution,” “cellular antennas” and “industrial emissions.”
The “Environment and Society” category includes sub-categories such as “beaches,” “parks” and “recycling centers.”
IUED’s director Amit Bracha explained that the website also seeks to paint a true picture of Israel’s environmental condition for the public, in a clear and simple way.
The reason some of the categories are lacking in information is that gathering it proved a highly complex task, which is still ongoing.
The main challenge now – other than to complete the information featured on the website – is to keep it constantly updated, Bracha noted, saying that he hopes the public becomes an active partner in maintaining and updating the site.
Fashion students at Israel’s Shenkar College of Engineering and Design were recently given a unique challenge – creating innovative designs using surplus clothes deemed disposable by a local leading fashion retailer.
The project marks the growing green trend in the fashion industry, as it – much like its contemporaries in the consumer product sector – is becoming more eco-conscious. The industry is making a global effort to offer consumers fashion items made from recycled materials, turning the “reclaimed” into super-chic must-haves.
As part of this growing trend, students at the Master’s program of Shenkar’s Faculty of Fashion Design have recently taken part of a project exploring “design as an engine of social impact.”
The students were also asked to design their clothes in the spirit of a potential target-market, and find an association that represented that market.
The items designed were then mass-produced and sold on discount, or designed as a unique one-piece, to be auctioned off. All proceeds went to the respective associations.
“The clothes we were given to work with were surpluses garments that were not sold, as well as items that had small defects,” class instructor Ayelet Carmon explained.
“We’re used to thinking of surplus from purely industrial point of view, but many companies actually get stuck with inventory because the law states that you can’t import goods that are not for immediate sale. Since the system encourages buying in bulk to get a better price, importers later face having to deal with surplus inventory.”
But if the students are using ready-made garments, where is the challenge? Carmon summed it up with “scarcity”: “Students would start working with something and then literally run out of it, so they had to improvise. The projects approach was ‘what you get is what you use.’”
The growing trend has been noted by retail giants as well: in December, Sweden’s H&M announced recently that as part of its social and environmental responsibility practices, it will offer customers a chance to recycle their old clothes.
The Israeli franchise is included in the venture, which will span 48 nations worldwide.
This video illustrates 10 of them: thank you to Ozgur (Turkey), Hemanth (India), Christopher (France), Cristian (Cameroon), Josh (United States), Andjelic (Serbia), Marinescu (Romania), Noam (Israel), Swapnil (India), Goeffrey (Canada).
IF WE can ask the right questions, we can change the world.
srael has received positive feedback from the OECD’s Chemicals Committee and its Working Party on Chemicals Pesticides and Biotechnology regarding its implementation of the organization’s policies in these fields.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s periodic assessment found that Israel’s compliance with its obligations in the areas of chemicals and waste management were successful and satisfactory, the Environmental Protection Ministry said on its website.
A delegation from the Israeli ministry presented the OECD’s committee with the steps Israel has taken in order to meet its commitments to the OECD.
Israel’s has noted several accomplishments since joining the OECD in 2010, including establishing a mechanism for managing and registering industrial chemicals, establishing the Pollutant Release and Transfer Register mechanism to keep track of chemicals emissions, and implementation of Integrated Pollution Prevention Control policies.
Israel also made significant progress in the comprehensive management of waste via legislation, waste reduction at source, the separation of different waste streams, recycling and reducing landfill; as well as management of facilities for waste and for recycling.
The OECD committee recognized Israel’s earnest commitment and efforts in these matters, saying that it had achieved a great deal in the two years reviewed.
“The committee members, as well as OECD Secretariat representatives, said that they see much improvement in our management of chemicals,” said Romy Even Danan, head of the ministry’s Hazardous Materials Division.
The OECD’s Environmental Policy Committee (EPOC) will meet in February 2013, to discuss Israel’s progress related to other environmental issues, including the use of economic instruments to manage biodiversity, environmental information and indicators.
A delegation from Mongolia’s Ministry of Environment and Green Development is hoping to take home practical lessons from a recent visit to Israel.
According to the Environmental Protection Ministry the Ulan-Bator mission visited Israel in late December as guests of the Environmental Protection and Foreign ministries.
The Mongolian delegates visited Israel with aim of learning from the Israeli expertise in the fields of water pollution management and prevention, and land rehabilitation.
The delegation met with officials from the Environmental Protection Ministry and from the Water Authority, as well as with representatives of companies that deal with land rehabilitation, biological treatment of contaminated soil, and treatment of other environmental woes.
The mission visited various sites across Israel, including the Shafdan Wastewater Treatment Plant and the Environmental Services Co., a government-owned company in Ramat Hovav, where they learned about innovative facilities for the treatment of organic waste and solid waste.
Mongolia has expressed great interest in forging collaborations with Israel on environmental issues, especially in the fields of air pollution and coping with desertification.
Mongolia has the lowest population density in the world, but the country is plagued by a variety of environmental challenges.
The effects of desertification and climate change have damaged the ability of its grazing animals to survive, and has prompted a mass migration of Mongolian residents from rural areas to the capital city of Ulan-Bator.
Today, 45% of the 2.75 million Mongolians live in the capital, which has registered a sharp increase in air pollution levels in recent years.