In a milestone for sustainable building in Israel, the Porter School of Environmental Studies Building has been inaugurated, providing an iconic space for environmental teaching, research, exhibitions, conferences and demonstrations of environmental technologies.
Distinguished guests at the ribbon-cutting ceremony included members of Tel-Aviv University's International Board of Governors, as well as Mayor of Tel-Aviv Ron Huldai and Head of the Opposition MK Isaac Herzog, who came to greet.
The Porter School's Professional Director, Arch. Dr. Arie Nesher provided a glance behind the scenes of the decision to construct the building: "when Dame Shirley Porter first began to envision a school of Environmental Studies, she already believed that the academic program should be housed in a Green structure that expresses environmental challenges and sustainability. It was also clear from the outset that the building should serve both as a laboratory and a pedagogical tool to introduce new green technologies into the Israeli building and planning industry".
Prof. Dan Rabinowitz, Head of The Porter School of Environmental Studies, with his eyes set to the future, described the students this building will house: "Many of our 150 MA candidates and 60 aspiring PhD’s are men and women with extraordinary commitment and considerable experience in the environmental field. They belong to a generation that sees sustainability, the environment, social justice and our common future on this planet as one and the same."
MK Isaac Herzog emphasized the importance of the environmental organizations, and referred to the legacy of Ora Hetzog, his mother, who was among the first to support the environmental movement in Israel: "The environmental revolution is perhaps the biggest revolution in the last decade in Israel. Thanks to the environmental organizations, Israel will have public beaches and open areas in the decades to come. The environmental organizations are the gatekeepers that care about the country we leave to our children and the future generations."