As Israelis prepare for summer, the Clean Beach Index ranks the country's beaches

According to Israel's Ministry of Environmental Protection, the cleanest beaches in Israel are in Ashdod, Eilat, Tel Aviv and Jisr al-Zarqa. Which are the dirtiest?
Which are the cleanest beaches in Israel? Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

Israel's Ministry of Environmental Protection publicized the Clean Beach Index today (Thursday) for the first time this season. The index offers a unified and objective assessment of the status of all undeclared beaches in Israel. Updated two days before its publication, the index shows that only 60% of the beaches are considered "clean to very clean"- down from 63% measured in March.

The index provides transparent and up-to-date information on the status of cleanliness on the beaches. It also assists in keeping track of the local authorities that do not fulfill their obligation of keeping their beaches clean. The first index was conducted in June 2005 and the reduction of waste on undeclared beaches has since been measured relative to the 2005 status of each given coastal area. 

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Israel's beaches, ranked from cleanest to dirtiest Photo credit:123FR/ Channel 2 News

The ministry categorizes the beaches into five categories: very clean, clean, medium, dirty, very dirty. According to the most recent index, the cleanest beaches were those in Ashdod, Eilat, Jisr al-Zarqa, Be'er Tuvia, Emek Hefer, Rishon Letzion, Tel Aviv-Jaffa and the Mateh Asher Regional Council. The Hof Hasharon Regional Council, on the other hand, has the dirtiest beaches.

According to the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the primary component of waste on all beaches is plastic, which constitutes at least 80% of the total waste. Plastic is therefore a good indicator of the cleanliness of any given beach. All of the plastic found in the beach area is counted- anything from the size of a bottle cap or larger. In June 2015, the ministry added cigarette butts to the count, considering the astronomical amount that can be found polluting Israel's beaches.



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