Citizens for the Environment (CFE) is an Arab-Jewish run, non-profit, social and environmental organisation. Established in 1990 by residents of the Galilee, their goal is to work together to protect the environment, natural resources and public health. Since its inception, CFE has promoted public awareness of environmental issues, supported dozens of groups of citizens, encouraged leadership in communities, and influenced both the environmental conduct of many factories and the legislation and implementation of environmental laws.
In the last decade, CFE has expanded its operations beyond the Galilee and operates at both national and local levels. Today CFE has hundreds of members, volunteers, and activists, both Jews and Arabs, all over the country. Together, members collect information on enterprises from various industries, analyse it, and publish a series of reports.
CFE’s main activities include promoting of industrial transparency, developing environmental protection law, prosecuting environmental offenders, and educating the public in support of a safer environment. CFE has succeeded in shifting the environmental policies of many industrial plants and has gone as far as creating legislation to enforce environmental protection. In 2013, The Leo Baeck School in Haifa awarded CFE the prestigious “Tikun Olam” prize.
Areas of Activity:
Environmental Transparency: Research and Publicity: Studying and researching the relationship between environment and public health and conducting in-depth reports about environmental offences. These reports help in promoting legislation, law enforcement, and public awareness.
Conspicuous Consumption: Multi-Faceted Campaigns: Campaigning to raise public awareness about today’s consumer culture and the effects of pollution and unsustainable consumption on long-term human wellness.
Lifestyle of Sustainability – Health Education for Healthy Habits: Developing of a social education initiative and workshops which provides information on the detrimental impact of highly processed and artificial foods. A qualified food engineer will lead research harmful practices in Israel’s food industry and lobby for safe food production policies, including farming customs and unhealthy additives in processed and “fresh” food.
Yizhar Fund for Environmental Social Entrepreneurship: The Yizhar Fund advances environmental activism through grant opportunities. We partner with students in academic departments across the spectrum in launching ventures based in their field of specialisation which will directly and positively impact society.
14 June 2016
The Health Ministry’s campaigns over the past few years promoting nutrition have skipped over Arab citizens, according to the NGO Citizens for the Environment. For example, the home page of the Health Ministry’s website has nutritional recommendations in Arabic for the recent Jewish holiday of Shavuot and during the Ramadan month of fasting. However, there is no information in Arabic about the damage that can be caused by sugar, salt or processed food.