NJ Senator Bob Smith visits Israel

N.J.’s environmental efforts can learn much from Israel’s conservation programs: Opinion

By Bob Smith

The majesty of tens of thousands of cranes and small birds taking off in massive flocks as dawn breaks over a small lake in the Hula Valley of Israel is not something I ever expected to witness. Nor did I fathom having the opportunity to learn of the conservation efforts to preserve Herzliya’s remaining seasonal pools, where water only fills up three months out of the year yet flora and fauna have adapted to the conditions in order to survive and have created a small oasis of natural beauty amidst the bustle of city life.

As chairman of the New Jersey Senate Environment and Energy Committee, I have gained a rich understanding over the years of conservation efforts that will help ensure that future generations of New Jerseyans have a healthy and beautiful state to live in and enjoy. Adding to my understanding and appreciation of the value of conservation was my recent experience in Israel, where I learned firsthand how the country’s efforts are becoming a model for environmental sustainability.

The trip was sponsored by the American Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (ASPNI), an offshoot of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI), which has worked for more than 60 years to preserve Israel’s rich environment across mountains, beaches, forests, deserts and tropics.

One of SPNI’s earliest achievements was the protection of Israel’s wildflowers, ending a long habit of Israelis picking thousands of species of wildflowers throughout the country for their Sabbath table – an appealing tradition, but one that had a negative long-term effect of leading to the near extinction of several species of wildflowers, including the iris and the tulip. Through a grassroots educational campaign directed primarily at the nation’s children, SPNI was able to reverse the depletion and preserved these prized flowers.

But SPNI is about much more than wildflowers. The organization is the largest environment organization in Israel, responsible for preserving open space, protecting beaches and promoting sustainable development throughout the country.

I learned firsthand how the country’s efforts are becoming a model for environmental sustainability.

Through my travels, I learned that New Jersey can gain much from SPNI’s experience and success. Roughly the same size and with a population similar to New Jersey’s, Israel has worked to preserve more than 31 percent of its total land in their natural parks and reserve system. New Jersey, which is the most densely populated state in the country, has reserved half that amount, roughly 15 percent of our land as open space and farmland preservation.

In Haifa, I saw community gardens that are not only creating urban spaces for growing food in vacant lots previously covered with garbage, but literally bringing people together from different faiths and backgrounds, including neighborhood residents such as Arabs and immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Ethiopia. Each community garden project comes with a social worker to help bridge the gap between the different cultures to ensure that participants can overcome racial tensions to create a sustainable food source as well as a community spirit. The pride they took in what they had accomplished was truly inspiring.

Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, has begun to implement more than a dozen initiatives that will make it the “greenest” Legislature in the world. These initiatives include large-scale changes such as installing solar panels on its 49,514 square-foot roof, the installation of electric, air conditioning, computer and lighting systems that will automatically turn on and off to conserve energy, and changes like switching from bottled water to pitchers and real glasses to reduce waste, and swapping out light bulbs with energy-efficient LED bulbs, which has saved the Knesset $800,000. Green Knesset, as the program is called, will also ensure that every employee is trained on sustainability issues to guarantee that those making the laws are educated and knowledgeable about the green movement.

This trip allowed me to see the wonderful history of Israel and how it works to focus on its natural resources and conservation. The SPNI and ASPNI are having a meaningful impact on the quality of life for Israelis by helping to protect and preserve this wondrous land.

I encourage you all to take a look and get involved in their good works. Find out more through www.natureisrael.org/aspni, email aspni@aol.com or call 1-800-411-0966. Through our combined efforts we can ensure the preservation of Israel’s natural resources for generations to come.

Sen. Bob Smith chairs the Senate Environment and Energy Committee. He represents the 17th District in the Legislature comprised of Milltown, New Brunswick, North Brunswick, and Piscataway in Middlesex County and Franklin in Somerset County.

link to article – click here

By Star-Ledger Guest Columnist
on December 16, 2014

Guy Bavli live on stage – January 12, Fair Lawn.

הוא מצחיק
הוא מפתיע
הוא המנטור של מיטב האמנים העל-חושיים
הוא הופיע כמעט בכל רשתות הטלויזיה האמריקאיות
והגדולות בעולם.
השאירו את הספקות מחוץ לדלת ובואו
תופתעו.
נשארו 20 כרטיסים למופע של יום שני 12 בינואר בשעה 8 בערב.
יהיה חם!
להזמנת כרטיסים: 551.574.0330

ניו ג’רסי בתנופה

ב-10 בינואר (פרטים נוספים בקרוב) – הצטרפו לחבר’ה במרכז ניו ג’רסי להיכרות, סיעור מוחות, מחשבות ושיתוף ברעיונות לפעילויות ושיתוף פעולה בקרב אוכלוסיית הישראלים.

פרטים נוספים בקרוב וגם ב

https://www.facebook.com/events/610738545719410/

שחרור

Jewish Soul Food, Israeli Style

ב-19 בנובמבר, ערב עם ז’אנה גור המגיעה לביקור מהארץ וחברתנו נירית ידין מניו-ג’רסי בשיחה על אוכל בכלל ואוכל יהודי בפרט, לקראת צאתו של ההספר

Jewish Soul Food: from Minsk to Marrakesh, More than 100 Unforgettable Dishes Updated for Today’s Kitchen

:NJMONTHLY.COM מתוך מאמר ב

Israeli cookbook author Janna Gur—one of the pre-eminent experts on the Israeli food scene—is coming to New Jersey to make two appearances next month. Discover why some see her becoming the Julia Child of Israeli cooking.

Gur’s latest cookbook, Jewish Soul Food: from Minsk to Marrakesh, More than 100 Unforgettable Dishes Updated for Today’s Kitchen, has an important Jersey connection.

Nirit Yadin of East Brunswick, a fixture on the Central Jersey food scene, collaborated on the book with Gur, a long-time friend who’s also founder and editor in chief of Israel’s leading food and wine magazine, Al Hashulchan (which Yadin translates as “On the Table”).

הקליקו לכאן לקריאת המאמר

Nirit Yadin, food writer

Israeli food authority Janna Gur

Fundraiser in Tenafly

רוחות המלחמה כמעט שכחו, והחיים ממשיכים. לא לכולם.
יש כאלה שגם ככה היה להם קשה, ובעקבות המלחמה נשארו אפילו בלי מקרר עובד בבית. במדינת ישראל, שעה מת”א.
צוות מתנדבים מקומי החליט להרים את הכפפה ולתת כתף כדי לגייס את להם את מה שחסר להם – ב ע ז ר ת כ ם .
חגיגה של צלילים שתבקע מגרונה של מי שהמציאה את השירה בציבור ‘על הרגליים’, שהרקידה את הקהל על שולחנות ‘בית היין’ והלהיטים שלה מנוגנים כבר שנים בכל תחנות הרדיו. אביבה אבידן מגיעה לארוע חד פעמי שכל הכנסותיו קודש לאנשי שדרות
מספר המקומות ב’אלק’ מוגבל. מהרו להבטיח את מקומכם ב”ה”חגיגה של אוקטובר.
חג שמח ושנה טובה מאוד!
10_25_14 event tenafly
תודה לאילנית סולומונוביץ’ חבוט ששלחה את המידע.

Israel Film Center

סרטים ישראליים לצפייה בביתISRAEL FILM CENTER

www.israelfilmcenter.org/STREAM is an initiative of the Israel Film Center at The JCC in Manhattan, a leading resource for Israeli film, expanding Israel’s emerging film industry and promoting Israeli culture in America.
The center serves as an exhibitor, promoter, educator, funder, distributor, producer, network organizer, advisor, and festival producer, as well as includes a viewing library and on-line database of Israeli cinema (www.israelfilmcenter.org).