Hoping to form a diverse team of creative, innovative and strategic thinkers to find new ways to deal with the ongoing climate crisis, Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael – Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF) is launching a Climate Scholarships Program led by the organization’s chief scientist, Doron Markel.

The program will award scholarships of NIS 25,000 ($7,260) per year for two years — NIS 1.8 million in total — to selected doctoral students at the Hebrew University, Tel Aviv University, Bar-Ilan University, the University of Haifa, Ben-Gurion University, the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and the Weizmann Institute of Science.

Students will be chosen based on their research into pressing issues, such as developing renewable energy solutions, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, identifying new energy storage technologies, and preparing for the anticipated health and sociological effects of climate change.

Markel said the Climate Scholarships Program “is an important stage in the creation of a team that will be the next generation of environmental leadership. In this way, KKL-JNF contributes to encouraging climate research and training the manpower that will help the important fight in the climate crisis.”

The program is part of KKL-JNF’s long-term plan to establish a Climate Center, where a cohesive climate strategy will be adopted and implemented on several fronts: assimilating climate topics into KKL-JNF’s core activities (forest, land, water), and leading projects in new relevant areas such as renewable energies and dual-use lands.

The Climate Center will also foster connections with external organizations in Israel and abroad, and promote projects on climate and environmental issues alongside civil society organizations, local authorities and government agencies.

KKL-JNF World Chairman Avraham Duvdevani noted that “KKL-JNF has always been a green body whose activities are dedicated to protecting and improving the environment and sustainability. KKL-JNF will continue to take part in all aspects of climate change and prevention of the damage caused by the climate crisis in our region and in other countries.”