Israel’s beaches are in much worse shape this year than last. In a survey of cleanliness on Israeli beaches, only 37 percent were found to be clean. Twenty percent were found to be “dirty or very dirty.”
The study of cleanliness was released on the eve of the official swimming season, which begins June 1, During last May’s survey, 57 percent of beaches were found to be clean. The worst beaches are in Eilat, Gan Raveh and Jisr a-Zarka. The cleanest are in Bat Yam, Tel Aviv and Ashkelon.
Environment Ministry officials, who are on constant patrol at the country’s beaches, say that the most common trash are cigarette butts and plastic bags from snack foods. The Ministry called on visitors to beaches to thoroughly clean up their surroundings when they leave.
Meanwhile, lifeguards were still conducting a work action, protesting the lack of a contract. Lifeguards have been leaving their posts at 2 p.m. each day, instead of at 5 p. Before they leave, lifeguards remove all swimmers from the water, but of course they go back in once 2 p.m. arrives and the lifeguards leave.