Adam Teva V’Din marine management head Adv. Tammy Ganot says that preservation of the ecosystem is important not only “in the classic sense of a variety of species and nature that are important in themselves, but also for our ability to makes use of the ecosystem, the use of water for desalinization, for example. Water contaminated with oil cannot be used for desalinization, and 70% of the drinking water today is from desalinization. That means that the sea cannot be used for fishing, which harms tourism, and requires taking notice of the enormous damage that can result from oil and gas exploration and drilling.
“The economic analysis does not include what happens if desalinization facilities are suddenly closed down for several days, and the damage to the economy,” Ganot says. “This is not included in the opinion, because there is no such information about the probability of a malfunction causing desalinization plants to close down.”
Such a shutdown took place last March at the Soreq desalinization facility, following contamination of seawater by treated wastewater. A serious case of pollution occurred last February, leading to the closure of the Palmachim beach to bathers and a recommendation not to visit the Soreq nature preserve. (LINK)