Southern towns to Court: Stop power plant

Gazan rockets could trigger catastrophe if plant built, say Kiryat Malachi, Be’er Tuviya.

By
March 19, 2012 03:24
2 minute read.
Be’er Tuviya Council head stands where plant to be

Be’er Tuviya Council head stands where power plant to be 370. (photo credit: Be’er Tuviya Regional Council)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

The Kiryat Malachi City Council and neighboring Moshav Be’er Tuviya filed a petition with the High Court of Justice on Sunday, asking the court to prevent a power station from being built in the area.

The petition argues that the gas-fired power station, planned to be constructed in the Be’er Tuviya industrial zone, could pose a serious danger to local residents because it is within firing range of the Gaza Strip.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Ten Grad rockets were fired from Gaza into the region within the last week, say the petitioners.

The petition, which names nine respondents including the National Infrastructure Committee, the prime minister and the defense minister, asks that plans to build the power station be canceled.

Authorities in Kiryat Malachi and Be’er Tuviya have fought for years against plans to develop the gas-fired power station, and say they fear a disaster if a terrorist rocket from Gaza hits the power station, not least because of the additional danger of flammable materials stored in other factories in the Be’er Tuviya industrial area.

The potential for casualties and damage to property are “enormous,” say the petitioners.

“In a real act of dreaming, it was decided to advance gasfired power stations, which are potentially explosive and have a heavy environmental impact on an everyday basis, right in a region that is full of hazardous materials and that is exposed to rocket attacks from Gaza,” the petition says.



Be’er Tuviya Regional Council head Dror Shor said on Sunday that the power station must be stopped. “We hope the country will put an end to this ‘dream’ before a catastrophe happens here,” he said.

The petitioners also say that the project’s developers have never conducted a health survey about the power station’s impact, contrary to Health Ministry guidelines.

The location of the power plant had not been selected after a thorough review of alternatives, the petitioners contend, but “first and foremost due to proprietary rights of private entities, extensive funding, power and influence.” Planning for the power plant had gone ahead “despite residents’ protests and with a blind eye turned to the environmental and safety risks,” they added.

IPM Be’er Tuviya, the company behind the power plant plans, said in a statement that natural gas-fired plants “bring a blessing to the areas in which they are established and certainly do not create damage and/ or risk.”

The National Infrastructure Committee and its environmental consultants had determined criteria for the plant’s establishment, the company said, which comprised a comprehensive risk survey for scenarios including earthquakes, security, air quality, sewage and soil pollution.

“The plant location was approved by the planning authorities in 2009 after a comprehensive examination of alternative locations.

Alternatives proposed by the local authorities were examined carefully and found to be inappropriate, as noted in the report submitted to the planning and building committee,” the company added.

Click here for special JPost coverage

Related Content

Riot
August 31, 2014
Rioting resumes throughout east Jerusalem Saturday night

By DANIEL K. EISENBUD