Toward an Assessment of the Sustainability of Water Governance in Israel Using an Integrative Sustainability Assessment Approach
Goldberg, Rebecca Heidi
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Water governance is a key policy issue for Israel primarily due to scarcity of water in the Country and broader regional environmental, economic, political and social challenges. In recent years a concerted effort to maintain water supply has lead to large-scale investment in alternative technologies such as desalination and treatment/reuse of grey water and wastewater. In addition, Israel prioritizes water allocations for agriculture, industrial and domestic uses. This research project seeks to shed light on these developments from an integrative sustainability assessment perspective. A sustainability analysis of this kind has not been previously completed for Israel. This project contributes to an initial sustainability assessment of Israel water policy through an evaluation of the Country’s most recent master plan. Using policy documents and primary observations from site visits to water infrastructure at Mekorot Visitor’s Centres this project evaluates water policy relating to resource maintenance and efficiency, as well as socio-ecological civility and democratic governance. Key recommendations include increasing public involvement in decision making, building social capacity for involvement in the water sector and clarifying plans for aquifer rehabilitation.