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Sustainable Israeli-Palestinian Projects to Hold 2nd Annual Update

Burning Electronic Waste In Idna (near Hebron)
Burning Electronic Waste In Idna (near Hebron)

Join SIPP at its second annual community update.  SIPP (Sustainable Israeli-Palestinian Projects), a Boulder-based nonprofit that works with environmental sustainability programs in Israel and the West Bank, is hosting its second annual Community Update, Thursday, October 20, from 7:00-9:00 pm.

Both Israelis and Palestinians are concerned about open burning of Israeli electronic waste in the West Bank.  Israeli communities generate a large amount of electronic waste, and residents of many Palestinian communities support themselves and their families by “harvesting” the usable components of this waste.  Unfortunately, some of those harvesting techniques threaten the health of the workers and of their communities.   At the October 20th update, SIPP President Peter Ornstein and electronic waste expert Anne Peters will talk about the work SIPP has been doing – including on-the-ground assistance SIPP will be providing when Anne and Peter travel to Israel and the West Bank at the end of October.
Thanks to community support over the past year, SIPP has been able to engage in multiple projects involving Israelis and Palestinians, and is actively working to bring meaningful change to the lives of Israelis and Palestinians, and to improve the environment they share.
“SIPP is helping both Israelis and Palestinians betanne-peterster understand the hazards associated with open burning of electronics for metal recovery, learn about safer options, and explore potential cross-border opportunities which make economic and environmental sense.  Anne and I will also meet with Israeli and Palestinian government officials, NGOs, and representatives of the Israeli recycling industry to consider policy options to better manage the waste,” Ornstein said.
Ornstein will also tour the ongoing construction of a demonstration artificial wetlands in the Kidron Valley/Wadi Al Nar (which runs from Jerusalem through the West Bank to the Dead Sea) which will treat sewage from a school to create water suitable for agriculture.  This SIPP-supported project is the first of what is hoped to be a community-wide project of constructed wetlands to manage the waste generated by the Palestinian community of Al Ubeidiyah.  The SIPP visit will include discussions with faculty from Al Quds University and Hebrew University who are involved in the wetlands project.

bruce_crop-238x300 October 20th event will include a short presentation by Bruce Shaffer on the Roots’ Youth Photography Program, which brings Israeli and Palestinian youth together to learn photography and gain new perspectives on their lives. Shaffer has developed, and for two years has lead, this growing project and will be collecting any surplus working digital cameras you may have – there will be a collection box at the October 20thevent.
In addition to collecting cameras, SIPP is asking those attending the October 20th event to donate toward its work, particularly to help support Anne and Peter’s upcoming trip.  The suggested donation is a minimum $50 per guest, but no one will be turned away.  More information about the event, which is open to the community and will be held in a private home and sukkah, can be found on the SIPP website: www.sipprojects.org.  For more information, please email info@sipprojects.org.
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About Peter Ornstein

Peter Ornstein is an environmental attorney and mediator living in Boulder, Colorado. Peter founded Sustainable Israeli-Palestinian Projects (SIPProjects.org), a nonprofit organization that engages Israeli and Palestinian communities to work to further common environmental and other interests, and to build meaningful connections between people in the United States and Israeli and Palestinian communities involved in these efforts. Peter is also on the board of the Boulder-Ramat HaNegev Sister City Initiative.

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