Who Profits Newsletter – 21 Nov 2011
Transmitted via Omar Barghouti
Veolia is not only still involved in the illegal Israeli tram project connecting Israeli’s colonies to Jerusalem, it also owns and operates (through its subsidiaries), as confirmed below, the infamous Tovlan landfill which processes Israeli waste on occupied Palestinian land in direct violation of international law.
Though it lost billions of dollars worth of contracts worldwide (particularly in the UK, Sweden and Ireland) and had to close shop in many countries, due to BDS and other factors, Veolia has yet to end its complicity in Israel’s grave violations of international law. It may take the loss of more lucrative contracts, especially in the US, to feel more heat. Then its share owners will reconsider.
Veolia’s Involvement in the Occupied Jordan Valley
- Confirmation from the Civil Administration: waste from within Israel is transferred to Veolia’s site in the Jordan Valley
- YARV Sherutei Noy 1985, a subsidiary of Veolia, has won a tender for waste collection services from IDF bases in the Jordan valley
On October 10th, 2011 the Israeli Civil Administration responded to a Freedom of Information law application that had been submitted by ‘Who Profits‘ a month earlier. The application was regarding the Tovlan landfill – a waste-disposal site operated by Veolia in the occupied Jordan Valley. Previous research work carried out by the ‘LifeSource‘ collective indicated that the waste transferred to the landfill originates within Israel. The Civil Administration’s reply officially confirms this and clarifies that Veolia is responsible for the transferring of Israeli waste to the company’s site in the OPT.
Furthermore, the civil administration’s response includes a list of companies authorized to transfer waste to the Tovlan landfill, among them two subsidiaries of Veolia Environmental Services Israel: TMM – Integrated Recycling Services and YARV Sherutei Noy 1985. In mid-August of this year, the latter won a tender issued by the Ministry of Defense for waste collection services from the IDF bases in the Jordan Valley.
Veolia is a multi-national French company operating in the fields of water, waste management, energy and transport services. Through its subsidiaries, Veolia is involved in the operation of the light rail in Jerusalem – a project that was designed to connect the city of Jerusalem with the illegal settlements around it. Additionally, the company operates bus services to Israeli settlements in the West Bank along road 443, which has been referred to as an “apartheid road”, because Palestinians are prohibited from driving on almost all segments of it.
Through its subsidiary, Veolia Environmental Services Israel (which bought T.M.M. Integrated Recycling Services), the company owns and operates the Tovlan landfill in the occupied Jordan Valley. The waste transferred to the landfill originates in recycling factories within Israel and in settlements in the West Bank. The company uses captured Palestinian land and natural resources for the needs of Israeli civilians on both sides of the green line. Under international law, Israel is prohibited from using land in occupied territory for the sole benefit of its own civilian population and, thus, the company may be complicit in Israel’s alleged violations of international law.
The civil administration’s response includes the following information:
- Eight Israeli companies hold permits to transfer waste to the Tovlan landfill: Eden Brief Recycling Services; Rami Shitawi – Poultry Maintenance; YARV – Sherutei Noy 1985; Ramnir; Mifat 1965; SH Market – Trade and Recycle; Sharonim Recycling; and TMM – Integrated Recycling Services.
- The waste transferred to the Tovlan site is brought from recycling factories in the areas of HaSharon, Sgula, Haifa and Afula and from the Hiriya site (southeast of Tel Aviv). All of these sites are located within Israel.
- The waste transferred to the landfill consists of municipal solid waste, construction waste, sterilized medical waste and electronic waste. The civil administration mentioned that there is no permit for bringing hazardous waste into the site.
- The average amount of waste that originates inside Israel and is permitted to be buried in the site is 19,000 tons a month.
- At the moment there are no expansion plans for the site.