|The Struggle to Save Adullam|
The Adullam area and parts of the southern Judean Shephelah have undergone accelerated development in the last 15 years. Parks have been established by the Keren Kayemet Le-Israel (Jewish National Fund), including a new nature reserve, the Adullam Caves Park. Numerous recreation areas in the parks and reserves, cycling routes and many other attractions serve as a magnet for tourists from Israel and abroad. In addition, thousands of highly motivated young couples have made Adullam their home in recent years.
The area on both sides of Road 38 has been designated as the Judean Shephelah Biosphere.
Hundreds of heritage sites are found in Adullam. This area was the heart of ancient Judea and the center of the Jewish people’s struggle for independence, from the days of King David through the Bar Kokhba Revolt until the establishment of the State of Israel. Thousands of people every year visit the numerous archaeological sites here.
The Mateh Yehuda regional council invested substantial resources in the area, in an effort to support and complement the grass-roots initiatives of the local population. This has led to the development of diverse economic activities and a burgeoning tourist industry (agri-tourism).
All this activity will cease and all those deriving an income from these economic branches will loose their source of livelihood if this beautiful unspoiled region is allowed to become an oil field scattered with oil-industry plants and access roads. The the habitat for birds and animals, the agriculture, the air, and the water will be destroyed.
No tourist will visit an area of oil drills, smokestacks, and pipes conveying gas and oil reeking of sulfur. No tourist will come to see an area pockmarked by trenches, quarries, and service installations which this project will create. No one will visit our heritage sites when the debris of a shale-oil industry surrounds these ancient landmarks.
Clearly, heating the earth and polluting the air and water will have a deleterious effect on the human and animal population, on the vegetation in the region's villages and parks, and on all forms of agriculture.