Just about five years ago on December 3, 2014, a pipeline burst leaking five million liters of oil along the border of Eilat and Jordan. The Eilat-Ashkelon Pipeline Company was doing routine work, and the result of the burst pipe is considered the worst ecological disaster in Israel and the largest oil spill to date.
The oil spill ran through the Evrona desert reserve, destroying thousands of species of animal and plant life, and causing irreversible damage. The local communities around the spill have suffered due to a spoiling of resources and environment damages. At the time over 80 people were treated for health damages in both Israel and Jordan.
The Environmental Protection Agency assessed that damages cost about NIS 281 million, yet in a recent decision after numerous court cases, a settlement of only NIS 100 million was made between the EPA, the Nature and Parks Authority, and two other local councils. The Eilat-Ashkelon Pipeline Company will pay costs towards environmental restoration, future care, and to supporting local resources for nearby communities.