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Kibbutz Lotan

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Kibbutz Lotan is shown on a map of Israel. Located in middle of the Negev Desert, Kibbutz Lotan faces some of the most extreme temperatures in all of Israel.

Overview[edit]

Kibbutz Lotan is a Reform Kibbutz, a collective community traditionally based on agriculture, located in Southern Israel in the Negev Desert, on the border between Israel and Jordan. Twenty Israelis, English and Americans founded Kibbutz Lotan in 1983. While the Kibbutz did not start out with a focus in sustainability, Kibbutz Lotan has since become a location for eco-tourism, sustainable living and eco-learning. [1]

In Kibbutz Lotan’s vision statement, the kibbutz states "We strive to fulfill the biblical ideal 'to till the earth and preserve it,' in our home, our region, the country, and the world. We are working to create ways to live in harmony with our desert environment.” [2]

An ecological mud hut in Kibbutz Lotan, Israel. Photograph by Adi Perez

Eco-Learning[edit]

Kibbutz Lotan’s many educational programs give participants practical and theoretical teachings in ecological design, permaculture and sustainability.

Kibbutz Lotan’s Green Apprenticeship Ecovillage and Permaculture Design course is a six-week intensive immersion program teaches the participants about:

  • Local food production – Organic gardening
  • Permaculture
  • Ecological design techniques
  • Natural/ alternative building- Building with mud, straw bales, tires and trash
  • Sustainable technologies – composting toilets, grey water and black water purification systems, solar ovens and geodisc domes
  • Community design
  • Environmental ethics [3]

Lotan also has a semester long study abroad program called Peace, Justice, and the Environment. The program does hands-on work like Permaculture, straw bale houses, and organic gardening, similar to Kibbutz Lotan’s Green Apprenticeship. The program also explores the relationship between Palestinian-Arab, Bedouin and Jewish Israelis and discusses ways to achieve a lasting peace in the region. [4]


Sustainable Living[edit]

Kibbutz Lotan has created multiple projects to help limit the carbon footprint of their desert community. Over the last four years, Kibbutz Lotan has reduced their waste disposal by 70 percent each year. [5] Tires, trash and recyclables (cans, bottles, cardboard and paper) have been used throughout the kibbutz to build walls, benches and playgrounds. Local towns, including the city of Eilat, have begun to bring their used tires to Lotan, so the kibbutz can continue to build using these alternative techniques.

References[edit]

  1. http://www.jnf.org/work-we-do/blueprint-negev/kibbutz-lotan.html
  2. http://www.kibbutzlotan.com/
  3. http://www.kibbutzlotan.com/creativeEcology/ga/
  4. Peace, Justice and the Environment College Semester http://www.masaisrael.org/programs/kibbutz-lotan-peace-justice-environment
  5. http://www.kibbutzlotan.com/creativeEcology/creativeRecycling/index.htm


External Links[edit]

Kibbutz Lotan

Kibbutz Lotan Study Abroad Program

Kibbutz Lotan Youtube page

Kibbutz Lotan Birding Reserve