In the context of President Barroso's visit to Israel, the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the Israel Ministry of Energy and Water Resources have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to deepen their scientific cooperation in the fields of energy, with a particular focus on clean energy, and water desalination. The link between energy and water will also be further investigated. The agreement fully complies with the EU-Israel European Neighbourhood Policy Action Plan adopted in 2005.
Both sides will encourage joint initiatives relevant for ensuring a sustainable supply of energy and water in compliance with international environmental standards. They will also strive for more efficient and sustainable technologies in these areas.
Renewables, smart grids, e-mobility, energy efficiency and oil fuels alternatives will be the focus of the energy-related cooperation, whereas water research will be concentrated on desalination, both areas in which Israel has a strong scientific expertise. Both parties will also look at the scientific challenges behind the link between energy and water.
The agreement will have an initial duration of 5 years and foresees activities such as joint research and scientific information, results, staff, equipment, samples and materials exchanges.
The agreement was signed on 9 July in Jerusalem by Dominique Ristori, Director General of the Joint Research Centre and Shaul Zemach, Director General of the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources.
The Israel Ministry of Energy and Water Resources within the Government of Israel is responsible for energy and water policy in Israel as well as for research and development activities necessary to support its policies. The Ministry represents Israel, directly and/or through its affiliated authorities such as the Water Authority, in all international forums dealing with energy and water.
As the European Commission's in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre's mission is to provide EU policies with independent, evidence-based scientific and technical support throughout the whole policy cycle. Working in close cooperation with policy Directorates-General, the JRC addresses key societal challenges while stimulating innovation through developing new methods, tools and standards, and sharing its know-how with the Member States, the scientific community and international partners. Key policy areas include: environment and climate change; energy and transport; agriculture and food security; health and consumer protection; information society and digital agenda; safety and security, including nuclear; all supported through a cross-cutting and multidisciplinary approach.