The Environmental Protection Ministry has filed indictments this week against the four big gas companies – Paz, Sonol, Delek and Dor Alon – for failure to divulge information regarding leaks from gas stations that could pollute groundwater and contaminate the ground.
The four were charged with contaminating water between 2000-4. According to the ministry's investigation, 93% of the ground around gas stations built before 1997 was found to be contaminated, while at a third of the gas stations, the groundwater had been polluted as well.
The companies must conduct routine tests to ensure containers and pipes were properly sealed. The ministry charges that data, which indicated there were leaks, was deliberately withheld. If convicted, the companies could be fined millions of shekels.