CONFERENCE ON ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND ENERGY
- Toward the implementation of the Paris Agreement, the Bank of Israel and the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Tel Aviv held a Polish-Israeli conference on climate and energy. Experts from both countries presented global, European, Polish, and Israeli perspectives on the environment and energy policy.
- As part of the Conference, research conducted at the Bank of Israel on the development of a long-term model for estimating various ramifications of structural changes in the energy economy was presented.
- The Conference was held virtually several weeks ago. The agenda and several relevant quotes by the various speakers at the conference are attached:
Prof. Amir Yaron, Governor of the Bank of Israel:
“At the Bank of Israel, we are studying the issue of climate change and are developing ways to prepare for such changes. This is a worldwide problem, and dealing with it requires collaborations that are as broad as possible. From a domestic perspective, based on forecasts, Israel is also expected to be considerably impacted by those changes, some of which we can already see.
From the financial perspective, as regulators, we are examining the potential ramifications of climate change—the impact on the economic system as well as the impact of the policy reaction. As part of our interest in enhancing our knowledge and endeavors in this area, the Bank of Israel recently joined The Network of Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System—the NGFS.”
Dr. Michał Kurtyka, Poland's Minister of Climate and Environment: “Climate change is a global issue and no country in the world can solve it on its own. Actions speak louder than words, and these actions are indeed taking place at the national level despite, or perhaps partially due to the challenge of rebuilding the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic. With a change to a clean economy 300 thousand new jobs will be created. Real and financial costs of no acting are much higher than those of the climate friendly policy. The European Union, which announced a 2050 climate neutrality target last December, was recently joined by Japan and Korea with a 2050 climate neutrality target, and China with a 2060 zero carbon target. Poland has long emphasized that EU climate action will not be effective unless it is followed by other big emitters.”
H.E. Marek Magierowski, The Ambassador of the Republic of Poland in Israel: "The climate change and its multiple consequences in various domains constitute an international challenge. In spite of the fact that most countries have to cope with different phenomena, in different circumstances and employing different tools. For instance, Poland's dependence on coal is an obvious burden, although, paradoxically, this obliges us to think more innovatively about the exit strategy. Israel has plenty of sun which is an obvious advantage, on the other hand water scarcity is a serious issue, which requires constant monitoring and out-of-the-box solutions. Both countries struggle to become more independent in terms of energy supply - Poland has been successful in reducing its reliance on gas imports from Russia, meanwhile Israel is heavily investing, both literally and politically, in its gas deposits in the eastern Mediterranean. Therefore the exchange of experiences and visions is so important in the global combat against climate change"
Mr. Udi Adiri, Director General, Israel's Ministry of Energy: “Israel is making huge steps towards renewable energies, mitigation of air pollution and greenhouse gases. We are challenging our targets every few years and making new and more ambitious goals, even though our renewables variety is very limited and based mainly on solar energy . Our latest goals were affirmed on reaching 30% renewables in electricity production by 2030 and stop completely the usage of coal in Israel in the next 4 years. The Israeli Ministry of Energy highly values any international cooperation on that matter and believes that the regional connectivity and the development of new technologies will accelerate the global change towards greener future.”
Mr. David Yahalomi, Director General, Israel's Ministry of Environmental Protection: “The climate crisis and environmental degradation pose a real threat to Israel and the world. Just as the Covid-19 pandemic has turned from a health crisis into an economic and social crisis, the climate crisis is expected to have a large-scale effect on the economy and on the finance sector. The Ministry of Environmental Protection is leading the approach that a greener environment is also better for the economy. In order to maintain Israel's competitiveness, we must act and promote a low-carbon, innovative, resource-efficient and highly productive Israeli industry. In order to achieve these goals, the Ministry of Environmental Protection is promoting a government decision that will set clear goals regarding the reduction of Israel's greenhouse gas emissions and the transition of the various sectors, primarily electricity production, to the use of renewable energy and energy storage.
The Ministry of Environmental Protection welcomes the pledge of the Bank of Israel to deal with the climate economy. The conference today, which is part of the joint work of Israel and Poland in this field, is an expression of the two countries' commitment to tackling the climate crisis and of the ongoing cooperation in the field of the environment between Israel and EU member states. “
Prof. Michel Strawczynski, Director of the Research Department at the Bank of Israel: “Reducing emissions caused by the use of conventional means of electricity production is essential to a solution to the climate crisis. Therefore, we recommend investing in the electricity system infrastructure in order for it to be able to support a larger share of renewable energies in the future.”
Lior Gallo, Bank of Israel Research Department economist: "The central result from a computable general equilibrium model that is currently being developed at the Research Department is that although green energy technology will soon be available and profitable, the emission elasticity to energy price changes is low. Hence, the emissions problem cannot be solved just by increasing their cost, but rather, complementary steps will be required. "
The experts from Centre for Climate and Energy Analyses (CAKE/KOBiZE): “It is important to disseminate the information about climate and energy policy and underline the great role of using the economics models to examine the impacts of climate policy on the economy”.