Those who stayed at the Grand Beach Hotel in Tel Aviv in recent days probably observed a group of approximately 45 Palestinian foresters, who came for a 3-day training workshop on the subject of forest preservation. The workshop took place through financing and planning provided by the Civil Administration in Judea and Samaria and in cooperation of the Israel National Fund and the Forest Department at the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture.
During the workshop, many lectures were delivered to the Palestinian foresters, including: An overview of the forest situation at the Palestinian Authority, policy and forest planning guidance, forestry surveys and measurements, forestry-related interface actions, tenders and work with contractors, herbarium-disinfestation, pastures, diseases and forest pests, forest renovation and invasive species. Moreover, on the third day of the tour, a themed tour on the subject of "The Forest in the region of the lowland coastal plains" took place.
"This is the third workshop we hold with the Israel National Fund and the Forest Section at the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture", explained the Agriculture Headquarters Officer at the Civil Administration, Mr. Samir Muadi. "The purpose of this workshop is to tighten the relationship and cooperation, to preserve the forests, to carry out information exchange between both parties and to train the foresters of the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture and the Agriculture Headquarters Officer".
The whole workshop was planned and funded by the Civil Administration that cared for the permit issuances for the foresters and financed the travel and hotel accommodation. Among the foresters, 12 Palestinian foresters who work at the Civil Administration were also present and also participated in the workshop in order to refine their professional knowledge in their field of expertise.
The Area C forests, comprising an area of approximately 170,000 dunam, are under Civil Administration responsibility. "A forest requires correct tending, correct maintenance, correct inspection and correct surveillance in order to preserve it", says the Agriculture Headquarters Officer. "Strengthened relationships greatly contribute to forest preservation. Consequently, within this framework, we try to tighten our relations and learn from the accumulated experience of the Israel National Fund, since once there is cooperation between the parties, the forests are better preserved".
In addition to the workshop, the staff at the Agriculture Headquarters Officer continues to vigorously perform its nature preservation activities across the Judea and Samaria Region, including the carrying out of a liman-tree planting process (plantation of trees in places with erosion danger), so as to prevent land erosion that may take place as a result of the floods that swept across the region during the last winter.