Washington, June 19 – Experts on global policy emphasized Tuesday during a Capitol Hill briefing the importance of U.S.- Israel partnerships in fostering new energy initiatives.
The event, “U.S.-Israel Cooperation for Energy Security in Light of the Changing Middle East,” featured Danny Rothschild, director of the Institute for Policy and Strategy and chairman of the Herzliya conference, an annual global policy gathering in Israel. The briefing was organized by the American Israel Education Foundation and the U.S.-Israel Business Initiative of the Chamber of Commerce.
The briefing occurred as the Rio-20 global summit got underway; the summit lasts from June 20-22 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. There, world leaders, government representatives, members of the private sector and NGOs are focusing on topics such as reducing poverty, increasing social equity, enforcing environmental protection and building sustainable development, defined as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
Sen. Mary L. Landrieu (D-La.) was the honorary host of the Capitol Hill event, which began with introductions by David McCormack of the U.S. Foreign and Commercial Service; Michael Shapiro of the American Israel Education Foundation; and Josh Kram of the U.S.-Israel Business Initiative.
“The opportunities in the U.S.-Israel partnership for energy security and clean technology are tremendous,” Kram said. “We’ve just begun to scratch the surface.”
Leaders and experts also discussed the ongoing Iranian nuclear threat and the importance of new energy initiatives and oil independence.
The size and potential of a new gas field Israel discovered near the Eastern Mediterranean Sea is “revolutionary,” Rothschild said. “In Israel’s energy marketplace, new gas is a game changer and could significantly reduce Israel’s dependence on oil.”
“One cannot seriously understand Middle East risk without understanding that without reducing dependency on oil, the probability of an attack grows,” he added. “This knowledge will set the groundwork for U.S.-Israel cooperation with energy initiatives.”