It’s actually pretty easy being green.

With the limited resources the country has (you know, being a desert and all), Israel is all about doing things the most economical way possible.  This has led to quite a few fantastic inventions, specifically in agriculture.

Drip irrigation is one. Technically around before Israeli Statehood, it has been updated and perfected by an Israeli engineer, Simcha Blass.  There is even an Israeli developed kit call <Tipa> that is used in South Africa as well as other African countries such as Kenya, Niger and Senegal.

You see drip irrigation everywhere.  People’s gardens, flower beds along the road and even trees all have irrigation pipe wrapped around their bases.

Photo taken by Paul
Photo taken by Paul

Another great invention is <reusable plastic trays> developed by Tal-Ya Water Technologies, where the plastic trays collect dew from the air and use that to irrigate the plants.

Keeping Israel green and sustainable also involves people on an everyday level.  There are recycling collection points on nearly every main intersection and outside schools.  The main things being collected are plastic and glass (you can also take certain empty bottles to the grocery store and exchange them for a small refund).  Interestingly there are also many collection points for old clothing.  You pop the clothes in the collection bin and they are cleaned, sorted and distributed to those that need them.

Another thing that is big (especially in Modi’in) is bio-degradable waste.  We have a small brown bucket under our sink, any fruit or veggie peals, egg shells, wood, grass/leaves and any leftover organic matter is collected into the brown bin and then that gets thrown into the big brown bin in the communal rubbish room. The large bins are then collected and the contents used for composting.

My favourite thing though is the solar geyser. Most houses have them, especially new houses as it’s a building requirement. The geyser does come equipped with an electric element for those cold, cloudy, rainy days when the water temp needs a boost.  Ours is on a timer set for about half an hour prior to when we usually bath/shower.  The best part is that in summer we will be able to switch off the electrical component and use only the solar side.  Even now, in winter, the difference in water temperature on the days when it is not overcast is amazing.  On rainy days I have to switch the tap to the hot side as far as it will go and the water is hot but not boiling and we have to be careful we don’t run out of hot water.  On days when the sun is shining I have to put the tap in the middle of hot and cold and even the water is sometimes too hot and I have to run in some cold water.

I’m loving how being eco-conscious has become such a natural way of life for us. Israel definitely makes it easy to do.

Choose Glass Week – Episode 1

This week is Choose Glass Week!  Spearheaded by Consol, take a gander at their site over here

Todays subject is Glass is infinitely recyclable.

Did you know that it takes about 1.2 tons of virgin batch material to manufacture 1 ton of glass?  Also, did you know that it takes less energy and resources to recycle glass?  In fact it takes 1 ton of cullet (recycled glass) to make 1 ton of new glass!  Glass can also be recycled many many many many (you get my drift right?) times.

Basically recycling glass just makes sense!

But wait, there’s more!

Glass can also be up-cycled, not just recycled.

Take a look at these awesome ideas for re-using glass products you all have at home already…

Make a photo frame:

Keep all those baby food, peanut butter and jam jars, print out photos, cut to size and curve into the jars, arrange them on a table or your mantle and enjoy!

Keep your craft string neat and tidy:

Clean the labels off jam jars (with metal lids), take a nail and place it in the centre of the lid, tap it into the lid with a hammer so the sharp bits are inside the jar, place your ball of string in the jar and thread the end through the lid, screw the lid on and there you go!


Make bulb planters:

You can paint the inside of the jars or leave them clear.  Fill with a little potting soil, add a bulb, top with some more soil, water and pop them on a sunny window sill and watch them grow and flower.





If you have any broken plates or glasses you dont have to chuck them in the bin.  Being very careful not to cut yourself on any sharp edges you can glue the pieces to a ceramic bowl or even to a wooden frame, grout the spaces in between the glass pieces and you have an instant and unique masterpiece.

Of course if you dont want to up-cycle you can recycle either directly with Consol or at The Glass Recycling Company.