“EcoPeace – Environmental Peacemaking in the Middle East” was the title of a conference exploring the Jordan River Rehabilitation Project of Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME) took place in Amsterdam on June 30, 2010. After having met leading representatives of FoEME at the 3rd Annual Conference of the Forum of Israeli and Palestinian Peace NGOs in Florence, Italy in February 2010, Rabbi Soetendorp promoted the idea of hosting a conference on the work of this special organization that brings together Jordanian, Palestinian and Israelis environmentalists and helped to find partners and sponsors for the event.


“I am very pleased that together we were able to organize a very successful meeting, which put emphasis on turning the Jordan river into a living source of water to all who live in the area.”, said Rabbi Soetendorp after the conference.


foemeThe event brought together experts, professionals and policy makers in the field of water, environment and the Middle-East and discussed strategies for sustainable regional development and collaborative water management as a necessary condition for lasting peace.


The April 2010 issue of National Geographic showed the work done by FoEME concerning the rehabilitation of the lower Jordan River that once carried an average of 1.3 billion m3 of fresh water to the Dead Sea annually. Today this figure has been reduced to just 20 – 30 million m3 per year due to the diversion of 98% of the River's flow by Israel, Jordan and Syria. The primary goal of the Jordan River Rehabilitation is to both identify the means by which water transfers to the Lower Jordan River could take place and help create the political will to make them happen.


More information on the Project can be found here.

The Soetendorp Institute


Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values
Van Wijngaerdenstraat 21
2596 TW The Hague
The Netherlands