Could more legislation be the answer to Haifa's pollution problem?
Zionist Union thinks so and announced Sunday a bill that would shut down the city's notorious Ammonia plant, move factories that are in populated areas and close any factories that fail to meet environmental standards.
Called the Emergency Plan for Rehabilitating Haifa Bay, it hopes to stop any further rises in pollution levels in Haifa and to "immediately remove any security or health threats to the area's residents."
If the plan were to come into law, it would have the Ammonia plant shut down and move factories that are in residential areas. It also would cancel out any plans to expand industrial activities that pollute the environment, especially those that are not up to certain environmental standards.
Furthermore, the bill calls for any factories built before 1995 to be required to undergo special approval within the first 6 months after the law comes into effect.
"The law would bring a new vision to the Haifa Bay by developing recreation areas and expand parks for residents to enjoy," according to the statement by MK Yael Cohen-Paran, who spearheaded the bill.
She said that if factories were moved or closed, space would open up and allow investment in the local economy and encourage tourism as well.