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The Ministry of Environmental Protection recently published the Memorandum for the Climate Law 2021. The memorandum’s main purpose is to create an organizational framework for Israel's handling of the global climate crisis. It follows the developing trend among countries worldwide that have enacted similar climate legislation. According to the memorandum, handling the crisis shall occur on two primary levels. The first is prevention and minimization of greenhouse gas emissions in order for Israel to meet its international obligations under the Paris Agreement. The second is advancing national preparedness for the impacts and harms of the climate crisis.
The Bank of Israel published its latest annual review at the end of May. The review includes an announcement by Supervisor of Banks Yair Avidan that he is promoting the formulation of updated comprehensive regulations on environmental risk management, considering the considerable importance he attributes to the subject of the environment.
In light of global capital market investors’ growing interest in the topic of responsible investments, the Israel Securities Authority recently published a proposed outline for corporate responsibility and ESG risk disclosures.
Israel's Ministry of Environmental Protection imposed a financial sanction of NIS 634,000 on Bazan Group's Gadiv Petrochemical Industries for not complying with a deadline to stop harmful emissions. The ministry stated that due to the severity of the violation, both a financial sanction and administrative enforcement measures would be imposed.
On March 18, 2020, the Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection issued a set of guidelines for adjustments to businesses and factories with permits and licenses issued by it for toxin permits, emission permits, and business licenses with environmental conditions.
New rules came into effect recently that constitute an amendment and update of the principal rules addressing industrial wastewater flowing from factories into the sewer system.
Recently, the Israeli Ministry of Environmental Protection published a preliminary draft bill relating to the proposed Integrated Environmental Licensing Law, 5775-2015. This preliminary draft bill, which is based on the European Union’s Industrial Emissions Directive 2010/75/EU, was disseminated as a result of the Israeli government’s decision in April 2015 to work towards improving environmental regulations and encouraging “green” growth by promoting an integrated environmental licensing law. This came in the wake of the Israeli government’s commitment as part of its OECD accession process, after a number of years of collaborative efforts between the Ministry of Environmental Protection and other government ministries and after consulting with numerous authorities in the business, public and third sectors.
The recent decision of the Antitrust Commissioner with regard to the existence of a natural gas monopoly illustrates all the more emphatically the absence of an orderly legislative framework to regulate all matters pertaining to oil and gas exploration and production in Israel. Nevertheless, moves are being made to clarify the regulatory framework concerning off shore Oil Gas. A few weeks beforethe Commissioner’s decision, the government had submitted a draft bill to the knesset on the matter of Israel's maritime zones. The draft bill is worded in a way that adopts the customary provisions of the international Convention of the Law of the Sea of 1982, even though the State of Israel is not one of its signatories. The draft bill defines five maritime zones, including the exclusive economic zone of the State of Israel. Besides defining the boundaries of the exclusive economic zone, the draft bill also prescribes the State’s powers and authorities and the laws that shall apply to that zone. The adoption of the draft bill by the knesset will create certainty and reduce the ambiguity surrounding all issues pertaining to oil and gas exploration, production, utilization and management in Israel’s economic waters. and should encourage foreign companies to consider entry into the Israeli market.
The Environment Treatment of Electrical and Electronic Equipment and Batteries Law came into effect recently, as well as the regulations promulgated thereunder. The Law and the regulations prescribe arrangements for the environmental treatment of electrical and electronic equipment, batteries and accumulators in Israel in order to encourage re-use of electrical and electronic equipment, batteries and accumulators and in order to mitigate the negative effects of such equipment and batteries and of the waste generated by them on the environment and on public health.