Published on : 09/14/2017
By : Arista Asmawati
The topic: “Afforestation in a Changing Environment – Israel’s Challenges and Achievements Concerning Forestry under the Threat of Desertification and Changing Climate.”
The event was attended by 35 delegates from Kenya, South Africa, Egypt, Holland, The Netherlands, Romania, Uganda, China, Tanzania and other countries. Victoria Barkagan-Myrav, KKL-JNF’s International Projects Coordinator, moderated the event and introduced KKL-JNF’s activities and the agenda for the day. A short video describing KKL-JNF’s activities concerning combating desertification, forestry, water and its international projects was shown to the audience before the commencement of the presentations.
Kalil Adar of KKL-JNF’s northern afforestation department provided a short background on Israel and KKL-JNF. His talk was devoted to KKL-JNF’s afforestation efforts over the decades since the establishment of the State of Israel, to rehabilitate Israel’s landscape that had been degraded over the centuries. Adar also talked about KKL-JNF’s concern with plant quality and survivability, an important recipe for success in dry areas. Kalil also spoke about KKL-JNF’s prioritizing community and public involvement as part of its mission to ensure the sustainability of forests, parks and open spaces.
Gil Siyaki of KKL-JNF’s southern afforestation department, gave the second talk at the event and presented research findings from the Negev, which indicate that this region used to be inhabited and agriculturally active. He gave examples showing how the Negev suffered from significant degradation in the past due to overexploitation of natural resources and neglect of agricultural facilities. Gil presented current examples for land degradation, but also talked about KKL-JNF’s efforts and achievements in rehabilitation, forestry and conservation activities, which prevent additional damage.