The Society for the Protection of Nature (SPNI) filed on Sunday an official opposition to oil drilling by the Shemen Oil and Gas Resources company, which is slated to begin shortly at the Yam 3 site off the coast of Ashdod.

Sending their opposition to South District Committee for Planning and Building, group members said that “the state demonstrates that it is not prepared for sea pollution, and there is no clear urgency for the drilling.”

Drilling approvals are occurring “conspicuously without a code of safety,” and there is no reason to rush to provide permits before such regulations are established, according to SPNI. The plans must be put on hold until satisfactory solutions can be found for the oil and gas drilling, to properly care for Israel’s citizens, beaches and marine life, the organization said.

SPNI will hold its annual Jerusalem Conference of Environmental and Nature on Monday, where the main topic of discussion will be oil and gas drilling, as well as other pressures facing the sea.

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