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Israel announces plan to slash carbon emissions by at least 85% by 2050

Proposal includes targets for a 96% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in transportation, 85% in electricity sector and 92% in municipal waste

The unrecognized villages around Ramat Hovav in southern Israel suffer from a high level of air pollution from nearby chemical evaporation ponds, December 28, 2017 (Yaniv Nadav/FLASH90)
The unrecognized villages around Ramat Hovav in southern Israel suffer from a high level of air pollution from nearby chemical evaporation ponds, December 28, 2017 (Yaniv Nadav/FLASH90)

Israel will seek to drastically reduce its carbon emissions by 2050 to help combat the global climate crisis, the Foreign Ministry announced in a statement Friday.

The “revolutionary and historic decision” agreed upon by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and several cabinet members will be put to a vote before the Knesset on Sunday, it said.

“The Israeli government set to approve an unprecedented decision mandating that by the year 2050 Israel will move to a low carbon emissions economy, while dealing with the climate crisis that threatens all of humanity,” the statement said.

“In coordination with the Paris Agreement and Israel’s international climate commitments, and to prevent crossing the global warming threshold of 1.5 degrees Celsius, Israel is committed to reaching the goal of zero carbon emissions by the year 2050,” it added.

The ministers for environmental protection, foreign affairs, finance, energy, transport, economy and interior are pushing for the initiative along with Bennett.

The move calls for reducing carbon emissions by at least 85 percent by 2050 compared to 2015 levels, with an intermediary target of 27% by 2030.

Tel Aviv City Hall lit in green to protest the US decision to withdraw from the Paris climate change accord. (Ron Huldai via Facebook)

“This is the first time that the Israeli government set joint national goals to reduce carbon emissions and declared a national strategy to move to a clean, efficient and competitive economy, thus aligning Israel with the other developed countries in the global fight against the climate crisis,” the statement said.

Israel signed the 2015 Paris climate accord, pledging to keep its carbon emissions stable until 2030.

Its 2050 plan includes targets for a 96% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in transportation, 85% in the electricity sector and 92% in municipal waste.

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