Washington, D.C., October 26, 2015 – This past week in Jerusalem, the World Zionist Congress, which is the governing body for the Keren-Kayemeth LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF) and other major Zionist organizations in Israel and around the world, passed two critical environmental resolutions titled “Preserving a Healthy Climate for Israel’s Future” and “Protecting Israel’s Water Supply from Pollution.” The Coalition on the Environment in Jewish Life issued the following statement in response:
The passage of these two resolutions is an important step towards a sustainable future for the State of Israel through the work of the KKL-JNF. Protecting water sources in Israel and ensuring a vital, vibrant climate are both necessary for the fulfillment of our Jewish obligation to serve as stewards of the environment.
The Jewish people strive to be a light unto the nations. The recognition from the majority of voting delegates to the World Zionist Congress, including leaders from Israel and the global Jewish community, acknowledging the impact of climate change and our role both within Israel and without of mitigating its effects is a landmark moment. In the passage of this resolution, the Jewish people through the World Zionist Congress have shown leadership and foresight on climate change, one of the most pressing issues of our time.
The environmental community is looking now towards another great international decision-making moment at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris this December. We hope that the resolutions passed by the World Zionist Congress will help demonstrate to world leaders the potential for a strong agreement on greenhouse gas emissions reduction and the protection of our natural resources.
The Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life thanks Aytzim’s Green Zionist Alliance for penning these two resolutions and the members of the World Zionist Congress for supporting them. We recognize that the work to ensure that these resolutions are upheld and adhered to is not complete. We look to the leaders of the KKL-JNF and the World Zionist Congress to continue to combat climate change and protect clean water in Israel.
COEJL is an initiative of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and serves as the Jewish partner in the National Religious Partnership on the Environment. COEJL works to mobilize the Jewish community to address the climate crisis through advocacy and to connect environmentalism to Jewish life and values.
JCPA, the public affairs arm of the organized Jewish community, serves as the national coordinating and advisory body for the 16 national and 125 local agencies comprising the field of Jewish community relations.