Opposition to 'Bahad City' Ends

An environmentalist group has withdrawn its opposition to the IDF's Bahad City, meaning the project may proceed unimpeded.

Maayana Miskin , | updated: 19:30

The Negev
The Negev
Israel news photo: Flash 90

The environmentalist group Adam Teva V'Din has withdrawn its objection to the IDF project Bahad City. The group's decision leaves organizers free to continue, with no legal or bureaucratic obstacles left in their path.

The suit was withdrawn after it was agreed that Bahad City will only be populated after the site meet rigorous safety standards regarding levels of pollution in the area.

The IDF is planning a major move to the Negev, to a site to be known as Ir Habahadim (City of the Training Bases), or “Bahad City.” Several training schools are to be relocated to the site, and a total of 20,000 soldiers will moved to the area.

Construction has been delayed by fears of environmental contamination from the nearby Ramat Hovav hazardous waste disposal facility. An environmental risk survey was conducted in 2009 and found the site of Ir Habahadim to be safe; however, Adam Teva V'Din objected to the findings, arguing that the findings were based on underestimates and the assumption that emissions would be reduced by 2012, when the base is to be populated.

IDF officials hope the move to the new base will be accompanied by an upgrade in technology and manpower. Local Negev officials hope the move will strengthen the economy of the area.