As New Jersey faces increasing climate threats, it’s turning to Israeli technology to deal with the winds of change—quite literally.

The New Jersey-Israel Commission and MILE Ventures co-sponsored a summit last week that brought state leaders and Israeli innovators together to address urgent climate problems, including the need for renewable energy.

The first-ever “Climate 180 Turning Point Summit” featured a delegation of cutting-edge Israeli sustainability companies, together with New Jersey officials and private sector executives. The forum focused on collaborative models between public and private stakeholders in the areas of energy and the environment.

“New Jersey, under Gov. Phil Murphy, is always looking for opportunities to foster technological innovation, particularly in clean energy. There is no better way to advance our clean energy goals than by promoting partnerships with cutting-edge Israeli R&D companies,” said commissioner Bob Gordon, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.

The conference included companies that received grants from the BIRD Foundation, a joint U.S.-Israel venture that provides capital for joint industrial research and development projects. Panelists and speakers discussed the future of energy, sustainability and climate-related technologies, in addition to the role of government, academia and the private sector in responding to the challenges faced by climate change in New Jersey, Israel and elsewhere.

Speakers included Gordon, along with Israel’s Consul General in New York Ambassador Asaf Zamir and BIRD Foundation Northeast director Andrea Yonah.

“It was an honor to join the conference,” said Zamir. “While all the nations of the world are dealing with these grave issues, for Israel, environmentalism and sustainability have never been a political fad. The founders of the Jewish state, from day one, needed to solve our sustainability challenges, and we will continue to do so in the future.”

Murphy, who has visited Israel on multiple occasions, has previously touted Israeli technology and innovation, and its impact on New Jersey.

“As we face the urgent climate crisis facing our state, collaborations with our friends in Israel can lead to important insights and new tools we can deploy,” said Andrew H. Gross, executive director of the New Jersey-Israel Commission. “We will continue to look at Israeli innovation and solutions and bring them to the Garden State.”

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