Mass of green events mark World Environment day, World Oceans day

Eco-activities to be held across the country on Friday through next week at beaches, urban nature spots, projects and sites where preservation campaigns are being waged

Sue Surkes is The Times of Israel's environment reporter.

A herd of gazelles seen in Mitzpeh Naftoah, Jerusalem, March 26, 2016. (Yossi Zamir/Flash90)
A herd of gazelles seen in Mitzpeh Naftoah, Jerusalem, March 26, 2016. (Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

With World Environment Day taking place on Saturday and World Oceans Day on Tuesday, environmental organizations are gearing up to run green activities up and  down the country on Friday and throughout next week.

From June 5 to 12, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority will be teaming up with some of those organizations for its annual “Man and the Sea” event, aimed at raising public awareness about the sea and the importance of creating marine reserves to protect creatures and plants from dangers such as overfishing and coastal development.

Family events will be held at the Achziv National Park in northern Israel, the Tel Dor and Apollonia national parks and Dor Habonim Nature Reserve in the center of the country, and the Tel Ashkelon National Park and Coral Beach Nature Reserve in Eilat in the south. All activities have to be pre-booked via the INPA’s website.

Mediterranean People will be hosting an activity at Nitzanim Beach in the south on Friday, from 3 to 6 p.m., and Zalul will be cleaning up at Arubot beach north of the Orot Rabin power station in Hadera — meet at Kochav Yaham in Caesarea at 7:30 a.m.

Gazelles at Nitzanim beach in southern Israel. March 22, 2013.(Moshe Shai/FLASH90)

At Kibbutz Ma’agan Michael in central Israel, volunteers are invited to help build a new herb garden to be used by those suffering from PTSD and their families. Pre-registration is required.

If banning single-use plastic is your passion, head for Tel Aviv’s Cafe Shapira, where Green Course will be holding a Zero Waste party starting at 10 a.m.

And for a deeper look at the sea, register to hear marine researchers from the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History in Tel Aviv discuss some of the issues on Tuesday, June 8 at 18.00.

In Jerusalem, the Sustainable Lobby is running a massive outdoor event on Friday at locations throughout the city and just beyond to showcase green projects, environmental campaigns and beautiful urban nature spots.

There will be tours of Jerusalem’s trees (meet at Sokolov Park on Sokolov Street at 10 a.m.), the “Roman” olive trees between Armon Hanatziv and Sur Baher (meet 10 a.m. at 13 Avner Gershon Street), Deer Valley (meet 10 a.m. at the main entrance), and the market at Mahane Yehuda (meet 9:30 a.m. but call Avigail at 0546565082 to register in advance).

View of the Jerusalem Forests from Yad Vashem. David Shankbone, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikipedia)

A walk and cleanup in the Jerusalem Forest will start at the forest beneath the Yad Vashem entrance at 10 a.m. A walk in the Darga Stream Metropolitan Park will start in Har Homa (meet 10 a.m. at the Carob Tree, call 05455822625 for exact directions).

If community gardens are your thing, head to Te-Atron Bustania near Kiryat Yovel, where there will be children’s activities and a community picnic from 12 to 2 p.m. (meet at Ringelbloom Street, opposite the park), or Rasco (meet 10 a.m. at 4 Netiv Zohara Street), or Talbieh (meet 11 a.m. at Sokolov Park on Sokolov Street).

Te-Atron Bustania near Kiryat Yovel. (Esther Tjon A Ten)

Campaigns to protect sites from development will be showcased at Mitzpe Netufa (meet 9:30 a.m. at the Hedgehog Park, 90 Forest Road, Ramot), “Mitz Petel Hill” in Armon Hanatziv, which fills with wild blue lupines in spring — meet 10 a.m. opposite 108 Avshalom Haviv Street, the Mir Forest outside Pisgat Ze’ev (meet 8:30 a.m. at 6 Eliach Street, next to the Or Nissim synagogue), the Har Nof Forest (meet 10 a.m. at the plot adjacent to the kindergartens at 24 Rabbi Shaul Even Danan Street), and White Ridge (known by its Hebrew name, Reches Lavan — meet 9 a.m. at the Ora junction gas station).

Muslala on the roof of the Clal Center, Jerusalem. (Jerusalem Green Fund)

Other venues include the Muslala art and environment project on the roof of the Clal building near the Mahane Yehuda market (meet 10:30 a.m. on the Clal building roof to hear about urban camping), the Cocktail plant nursery next to the Givat Ram Jerusalem Botanical Gardens (meet at 10 a.m. at 1 Burla Street to hear about composting) and the Boydem secondhand clothing store (meet 10:30 a.m. at 15 Tzeret Street in the Talpiot industrial zone for a styling workshop).

Events will be held at the Natural History Museum in the German Colony at 11:30 a.m., 12 p.m. and 12:30 p.m.

Both this program (only available in Hebrew) and the first Jerusalem and Judea Climate Conference, whose last event takes place on Thursday, June 3, are being organized within the framework of the Jerusalem Green Fund.

Green events throughout the year can be followed on the calendar of Life and Environment, the umbrella body for Israel’s environmental organizations.

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