ASSESSMENTS

Israel’s ‘Climate Diplomacy’ May Unlock More Goodwill in the Arab Gulf

MIN READAug 25, 2021 | 21:19 GMT

The head of the renewable energy laboratory at Israel’s Tel Aviv University researches how to harness hydrogen from plants to potentially use as a new form of electricity on June 11, 2020.

The head of the renewable energy laboratory at Israel’s Tel Aviv University researches how to harness hydrogen from plants to potentially use as a new form of electricity on June 11, 2020.

(JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images)

Israel’s new climate-focused diplomatic push will unlock new business and political opportunities in arid Arab Gulf states, and could also pave the way for normalization in major holdout countries like Oman, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s new government is pursuing a new “climate diplomacy” strategy designed to increase compliance with international climate accords while sharing Israel’s renowned expertise in green technology with friendly states in exchange for new business and improved diplomatic relations. Israel’s foreign ministry announced the eco-focused push in July following the release of a major U.N. climate report warning that the world would soon face catastrophic climatic changes. The new diplomatic strategy also comes at a time when Israel’s most eco-focused party, Meretz, is not only in government but in control of the country’s environment ministry -- adding to the renewed sense of political urgency on combatting global warming. ...

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