January 3, 2008
Is the Dead Sea dying?
(Page 2 - Previous Page)Among those seeking alternative solutions to the problem are such august bodies as the World Monuments Fund and the U.S. Senate.
The former has named the Jordan River and Dead Sea one of the world's 100 most endangered sites, and the U.S. Senate recently approved Resolution 387, sponsored by Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.), calling on Israel, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority to "assess the environmental, social, health, and economic impacts ... of the Red Sea-Dead Sea Water Conveyance Concept in comparison to alternative proposals" and "develop a comprehensive strategy to rectify the degradation of the Jordan River."
Aside from anything else, Bromberg says, if the Red-Dead Canal goes forward, "it would be the final death word for the Jordan River -- because there would never be any incentive to have any water there."
Ultimately, FoEME's prosaic Mehyar sounds an equally passionate note. "We keep remembering the rights of humans," he says, "but we forget about the rights of the natural habitat itself."
How to help:
Simply writing a letter can be a good way to try to protect the Dead Sea and Jordan River. Write to Senators Boxer and Feinstein, and urge them to act on Res. 387; contact information for both can be found at www.senate.gov.
A visit to FoEME's website (www.foeme.org) is an excellent way to learn more, both about the environmental issues and about that unlikeliest of success stories: Jordanians, Palestinians and Israelis working as equals to solve shared problems.
Anyone planning a trip to the Middle East can learn more, up-close, by joining an FoEME New Neighbor Paths Tour, leaving from Israel, Jordan or Jericho; FoEME will also organize a tour for groups of 15 or more.
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