When the State of Israel was born, the surge of construction, development and industrialization was astounding. Dozens of new cities were constructed, hundreds of factories were built, thousands of kilometers of roads were paved, electrical consumption increased, as did air and maritime traffic. However, no one gave a thought to Israel’s most precious resource: the environment.
To Be or Not to Be is the history of the Environmental Management in Israel, from a tiny office in a flooded Jerusalem basement to a proper government ministry. It is also an autobiography, from the author’s childhood in besieged Jerusalem and the newborn Kibbutz Nahal Oz, through the halls of academia and government, as he changed the face of Israel, challenging bureaucrats and plutocrats along the way. From the struggles over the Trans-Israel Highway and Ben Gurion Airport 2000, through the transition from coal to natural gas, to the future of solar energy and hydrogen fuel, the author asks: Have we been too successful? Has the essential battle for the world we leave our children become a weapon for the cynical and the self-serving who ignore crucial projects?