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The Daily TIP: How Israel's Water Know-How Can Meet the Needs of an Increasingly Thirsty World

Posted by Tip Staff - January 09, 2019

How Israel's Water Know-How Can Meet the Needs of an Increasingly Thirsty World
Patriots Owner Robert Kraft Named 2019 Genesis Prize Winner
PayPal Closes Account of Neo-Nazi Group with Ties to Assad, Hezbollah, and Anti-Israel Boycotts
Israeli Tech at CES Includes Flying Cars, Laundry-Folding Robots, Food-Delivery Drones

How Israel's Water Know-How Can Meet the Needs of an Increasingly Thirsty World

As people everywhere turn on their taps, most are not aware that by 2025, at least half the globe’s population of 7.6 billion is expected to be living in water-stressed areas. And according to the World Health Organization, as of 2017, over two billion people in the world lack access to safe drinking water.

What is the reason for this looming water crisis? According to the World Resources Institute, a global non-profit that focuses on sustainable development, the crisis is the result seven problems: climate change and its effects on a region’s aridity, water demand, depleted groundwater, water waste, poor water infrastructure, lack of healthy ecosystems, and the price of water for investors and the general public.

But there is one country that has solved its own water problem and has expertise to share with others. That country is Israel, and it is today what is perhaps the world’s only water superpower.

Israel is no longer reliant on the weather or its neighbors for its water needs. It achieved this by combining all available technologies to save as much water as possible. While the country is 60 percent desert, in 2013 it announced it had achieved water independence through smart planning and innovative thinking: desalinizing seawater, reusing treated sewage for agriculture, creating software that warns authorities about leaks, implementing drip irrigation techniques, and accounting for every drop of water. Some of the techniques Israel uses today were developed at home, others abroad.

To read the complete essay, please click here.

Patriots Owner Robert Kraft Named 2019 Genesis Prize Winner

Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been named the winner of the 2019 Genesis Prize, The Jerusalem Post reported Wednesday.

Kraft has said that he will forgo the $1 million in money that accompanies the prize. He asked that the money be donated in his honor to programs that fight anti-Semitism and efforts to delegitimize Israel.

The prize, which has been called the "Jewish Nobel" by Time magazine, is to be awarded to Kraft in June by Israel's prime minister at a gala ceremony.

Isaac Herzog, who heads the Genesis Prize Selection Committee and is also Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, said, "I applaud Robert Kraft’s decision to focus his energies and the Genesis Prize award funds on combating antisemitism, the de-legitimization of Israel, and racially-motivated hate crimes. The rising tide of antisemitism is a threat not only to Jews, but to the very fabric of any democratic society where it is allowed to take place.”

“I am honored to receive the Genesis Prize and thank the Foundation for its willingness to direct my prize monies to such worthy causes,” Kraft said. “This award amplifies my ability to raise both awareness and additional funds to fight antisemitism, attempts to de-legitimize Israel and other forms of prejudices.”

Kraft is the seventh winner of the award, following United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who received a Lifetime Achievement Award; former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg; actor Michael Douglas; violinist Itzhak Perlman; sculptor Anish Kapoor; and actress Natalie Portman.

In June 2017, he brought a delegation of football Hall of Famers to Israel.

PayPal Closes Account of Neo-Nazi Group with Ties to Assad, Hezbollah, and Anti-Israel Boycotts

PayPal, the U.S.-headquartered digital payments company, has shut the account of The Third Way, a German neo-Nazi party with links to Iranian-backed Hezbollah, the Syrian regime, and the anti-Israel boycott movement, Benjamin Weinthal reported in The Jerusalem Post on Monday.

The donation section on The Third Way website states: “This recipient is currently unable to receive money.” The group’s PayPal page, where the account is listed, encourages support for a convicted Holocaust denier, saying, “Freedom for Horst Mahler: Political Prisoner of the Federal Republic of Germany.”

The intelligence agency in the German state of Baden Württemberg said in 2018 that propaganda campaigns from the Third Way calling to boycott Israeli products mirror “similar measures against German Jews by the National Socialists.”

On their website, members of The Third Way can be seen meeting with the extremist Syrian Social Nationalist Party in Lebanon and representatives of the Assad regime in Syria. The Neo-Nazi group also visited the Hezbollah propaganda museum in the village of Mleeta in southern Lebanon.

Kai Zimmermann, a senior figure in the movement, posed next to a plaque reading, “No, Israel is not invincible.” The group labels Israel a “terror state” on its website.

German and American officials have long urged PayPal to shut the account of the extremist Neo-Nazi group. In 2017, Jennifer DiSiena, then the communications director for Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) told the Post: “Congressman Zeldin supports the closure of this PayPal account.”

Volker Beck, a former Green Party deputy in the Bundestag who chaired the German-Israel Parliamentary Group, shared their view: “I find that one should not voluntarily provide an account to a neo-Nazi party, Holocaust deniers and other antisemites. Therefore, I also expect companies [to show] some civil courage,” he said.

Israeli Tech at CES Includes Flying Cars, Laundry-Folding Robots, Food-Delivery Drones

The annual Consumer Electronics Show, now in its 51st year, has become a mecca for Israeli tech firms. From software for autonomous vehicles to drones delivering pizza to walking and talking robots, if there’s a consumer angle, CES – with 180,000 attendees and 4,500 exhibitors from 150 countries –is an essential part of any company’s international roll-out.

This year, there will be dozens of Israeli startups exhibiting across the sprawling Las Vegas World Trade Center, where CES is being held from January 8-11. Twenty-two Israeli firms will be part of the Israeli Pavilion, sponsored by the Israeli Export Institute. (Click here to see the full list.)

ISRAEL21c takes a look at some of the hottest Israeli firms exhibiting at CES this year.

Innoviz makes smart LiDAR systems – the “eyes” in next-generation autonomous vehicles. Innoviz’s LiDAR sends out pulsed laser beams to measure and monitor a car’s surroundings. The company has already received a pre-CES “innovation award” in the vehicle intelligence category. BMW is now integrating Innoviz into its autonomous vehicles scheduled to be launched in 2021.

Vayavision acts as a brain to sensors installed in cars from companies like Innoviz, determining which sensor to use at any given moment to keep drivers and pedestrians safe. Vayavision takes its data from radar, LiDAR and camera sensors. The Vayavision “brain” is intended to reduce false alarms and missed detections. The company raised $8 million in October.

(For a complete list of the Israeli companies at CES see Israel21c )

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