Israel and Jordan renewed an agreement on cooperation in environmental protection and nature conservation. The agreement was signed in Amman by Environment Minister Dalia Itzik and Jordanian Minister of Municipal, Rural, and Environmental Affairs Tawfiq Kraisham. The ministers also agreed to establish, by the end of April, a joint committee on environmental protection to draw up the final environmental treaty.
During the meeting, the Jordanians raised the issue of pollution in the Gulf of Akaba, while Israel focused on the environmental impact of projects along the Jordan River. The new agreement should make progress possible in the stalled Jordan Gateway industrial park project and the joint Akaba-Eilat airport, both of which have faced opposition from Israeli environmental groups.
The environmental treaty between the two countries was first signed in September 1995, but expired a year later. Since then, it has not been renewed due to what some Israeli officials call "technical difficulties" and others say were problems caused by an unfavorable political climate.
Sources: The Jerusalem Post