Professor Alon Tal is the chair of the Tel Aviv University Department of Public Policy. He holds degrees in environmental policy, law and economics. His doctoral dissertation at Harvard University focused on regulatory strategies for addressing nonpoint source water pollution and received the Willensky Prize for best policy research by a Harvard graduate student in health and environmental policy. During his time in graduate school, Tal served as a consultant for the Water Division of U.S. EPA.
In recent years, Professor Tal’s research has focused both on water policy challenges and the interface between technology and water quality – including two publications in the journal Science assessing different aspects of water Israel’s water management experience. In 2011 his article proposing transboundary stream restoration strategies was selected as the best article in the field of international water management by the International Journal of River Basin Management Competition.
In recent years, Tal co-led a research team that assessed the presence of endocrine disrupting chemicals in wastewater, characterizing the risks associated with intensive effluent recycling. He has also published numerous articles in professional journals about stream restoration, irrigation policies and desalination. In 2010, he co-edited with Alfred Abed-Rabbo Water Wisdom, a New Menu for Palestinian and Israeli Cooperation in Water Management, (Rutgers University Press) that was favorably reviewed in Nature.
In addition, Tal has been an activist and advocate on behalf of water pollution prevention and stream restoration for some thirty years. During the 1990s, as director of the Israel Union for Environmental Defense he initiated numerous suits against polluting industries and municipalities. In 2003, he authored an amendment to Israel’s water law which for the first time formally granted nature rights to water allocation. In 2018, he was the lead petitioner in the largest class action in Israel’s history about water resources, suing chemical plants in Rotem for contamination of the Havurat Yehudah Aquifer and the Boqeq stream.
For more information see Professor Tal’s website at: https://english.tau.ac.il/profile/alontal