The Waste Landfill Policy in Israel: Economic and Political Perspectives

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The consistent and continuous growth in the world’s population is creating many challenges for public policymakers in the different life areas, including dealing with the increasing amounts of waste that are generating problems involving air and land pollution and a shortage of land for waste disposal. This study presents the effects of public policy on managing municipal waste, measured as the quantity and rate of waste collected throughout Israel in recent years and disposed of in various landfills. An analysis of the political and economic factors affecting this policy is also conducted. The study combines a quantitative and qualitative approach, where the quantitative study includes the analysis of statistical data based on information from the Central Bureau of Statistics, the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the Ministry of Finance, and others, and the qualitative study relies on reading and analyzing the primary documents of different government ministries on Israel’s waste disposal policy and information in the media on this issue. The research findings attest to an increase in the amount of municipal waste dumped in Israel, a merely slight decrease in the rate of landfilling as a proportion of all municipal waste disposal, and a merely slight increase in the rate of municipal waste recycled in recent years. The research conclusions stress the effects of the landfill levy and the Cleanliness Maintenance Fund on one hand and of government instability in the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the positivist policy embraced by decision makers in the Ministry of Environmental Protection, and the power struggles between Israel’s different ministries on the other hand, as the respective economic and political factors affecting Israeli policy on municipal waste management. The article contributes to understanding the dynamics of municipal waste management policy in Israel by providing empirical data, analyzing influencing factors, and offering insights into the challenges and opportunities in this area. This study can serve as the basis for future studies that will examine the waste landfill policy in Israel in the context of pressing global challenges such as climate change, the advancement of novel waste treatment technologies, and the potential stabilization of Israel’s political system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2791
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2024


  • environmental quality
  • municipal waste
  • public policy
  • recycling
  • waste disposal
  • waste landfill


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