Israel Has Tapped Into The Sea To Relieve Severe Drought

Not a drop to drink? Not so fast.

Photo by Ron Almog/Flickr.


Israel has solved its water scarcity crisis by incorporating Mediterranean seawater and recycled wastewater.

People living on the U.S. West Coast can relate to Israel’s struggles with drought and water scarcity. With a dry, Mediterranean climate and large stretches of desert, both regions have to become clever when the wells run dry. But in stark contrast to the U.S., Israel has resolved its water problems and has become a world leader in water recycling efforts in what seems like no time at all.

In just six years, Israel went from struggling to meet water demands after a series of severe droughts to recycling 86% of its wastewater and desalinating nearby seawater, according to a New York Times report. To put that impressive leap into perspective, the U.S. recycles a measly 1% of its wastewater for agricultural use. Before the Israeli government implemented aggressive recycling methods, residents were required to limit their shower times, forgo washing their cars, and abandon watering their lawns to maintain potable water reserves. “Now there is no problem of water,” agronomist Shaul Ben-Dov told the Times. “The price is higher, but we can live a normal life in a country that is half desert.”

But it’s not just due to improved water recycling and desalination efforts that Israel averted a national crisis. Under the guidance of the Water Authority, an agency created in response to dwindling water reserves in 2007, government employees installed water-saving showerheads in every household. This and other conservation campaigns helped cut residential water use down by roughly 20%.

Americans would be wise to follow Israel’s lead in conserving existing water sources and funding modern desalination methods. Despite pulling out of a severe drought last winter, unusually dry conditions are causing Californians to once again worry about natural resources and a long-term plan.

via Douglas Muth / Flickr

Sin City is doing something good for its less fortunate citizens as well as those who've broken the law this month. The city of Las Vegas, Nevada will drop any parking ticket fines for those who make a donation to a local food bank.

A parking ticket can cost up to $100 in Las Vegas but the whole thing can be forgiven by bringing in non-perishable food items of equal or greater value to the Parking Services Offices at 500 S. Main Street through December 16.

The program is designed to help the less fortunate during the holidays.

Keep Reading Show less

For more than 20 years. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has served the citizens of Maine in the U.S. Senate. For most of that time, she has enjoyed a hard-fought reputation as a moderate Republican who methodically builds bridges and consensus in an era of political polarization. To millions of political observers, she exemplified the best of post-partisan leadership, finding a "third way" through the static of ideological tribalism.

However, all of that has changed since the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Voters in Maine, particularly those who lean left, have run out of patience with Collins and her seeming refusal to stand up to Trump. That frustration peaked with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Keep Reading Show less
via / Flickr and Dimitri Rodriguez / Flickr

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign looks to be getting a huge big shot in the arm after it's faced some difficulties over the past few weeks.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in the Democratic parties progressive, Democratic Socialist wing, is expected to endorse Sanders' campaign at the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queens, New York this Saturday.

Fellow member of "the Squad," Ilhan Omar, endorsed him on Wednesday.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by HAL9001 on Unsplash

The U.K. is trying to reach its goal of net-zero emissions by 2050, but aviation may become the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.K. by that same year. A new study commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) and conducted at the Imperial College London says that in order for the U.K. to reach its target, aviation can only see a 25% increase, and they've got a very specific recommendation on how to fix it: Curb frequent flyer programs.

Currently, air travel accounts for 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions, however that number is projected to increase for several reasons. There's a growing demand for air travel, yet it's harder to decarbonize aviation. Electric cars are becoming more common. Electric planes, not so much. If things keep on going the way they are, flights in the U.K. should increase by 50%.

Nearly every airline in the world has a frequent flyer program. The programs offer perks, including free flights, if customers get a certain amount of points. According to the study, 70% of all flights from the U.K. are taken by 15% of the population, with many people taking additional (and arguably unnecessary) flights to "maintain their privileged traveler status."

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet