Manitoba Israel Water Experts Symposium Open in Jerusalem

Professor Avital Gasith of the Faculty of Life Sciences at Tel Aviv University, who is serving as the symposium's chair, opened the conference with a general comparative presentation of water issues in Manitoba and Israel, noting the fact that Lake Winnipeg itself is larger than the total area of the entire state of Israel. In spite of this, Professor Gazit said, there are many joint research su

By KKL
January 19, 2010 15:49
2 minute read.
The-Manitoba

The-Manitoba. (photo credit: kkl)

 
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At the festive opening of the second symposium of water experts from Manitoba and Israel in Jerusalem, H.E. Christine Melnick, Minister of Water Stewardship, Province of Manitoba, Canada, made the request that professional and personal ties between Manitoba and its scientists and Israel, specifically KKL-JNF, be developed and expanded. Ms. Melnick expressed the view that the values shared by the Province of Manitoba and KKL-JNF are the basis for the partnership that has been created together with Mel Lazareck, President of JNF Manitoba, over the past few years in the field of research on protection and improvement of water sources. "Most of you are here for the first time and during your visit you will be learning about the uniqueness of Israel and its citizens and the exceptional qualities of this amazing country. Every time I fly to and from Israel - and this is my fourth visit here - I start thinking about when and how I'll come back," Ms. Melnick said about her devotion and relationship to Israel.



Professor Avital Gasith of the Faculty of Life Sciences at Tel Aviv University, who is serving as the symposium's chair, opened the conference with a general comparative presentation of water issues in Manitoba and Israel, noting the fact that Lake Winnipeg itself is larger than the total area of the entire state of Israel. In spite of this, Professor Gazit said, there are many joint research subjects shared by Manitoba and Israel, as they share identical issues and problems regarding water quality, environment and protection of water sources.





In his greeting to symposium participants, KKL-JNF World Chairman Efi Stenzler explained the reasons for KKL-JNF's commitment of the past few years to massive investment in the development and protection of water sources, river restoration, and the battles against soil salination on the one hand and desertification on the other. "Over the years, KKL-JNF has amassed a tremendous amount of experience in building water reservoirs. This year, we finished building our 212th reservoir. Most of the reservoirs store purified effluents, while some of them harvest floodwaters. The reservoirs we have built store over 300 million cubic meters of water and many of them fill up twice a year. This year, we provided Israeli agriculture with more than half of the total amount of water it needs."



Stenzler related to the huge difference between water availability in Israel and Manitoba, which has over a hundred thousand lakes. "If we were to take one centimeter of water from Lake Winnipeg, it would be a more water than there is in the entire Lake Kinneret," Stenzler noted, praising the contribution of the Minister of Water, Ms. Melnick, to the close scientific ties that have been created as a result of her personal initiative.



"KKL-JNF could find no better friend of the Jewish people and the state of Israel than Chris Melnick. From this podium, I call on the representatives of all the institutions in the world to create a professional forum for cooperation on water-related issues. KKL-JNF will be happy to share all its accumulated experience with such a forum, since we are an apolitical organization that can contribute without unrelated considerations."



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