ISRAEL: At the end of August the National Infrastructure Committee released a railway electrification plan valued at US$1·32bn, excluding rolling stock, which would see most lines electrified within 10 years. Government approval is to be sought next year, following consultation with local authorities.
The first stage covers electrification from Tel Aviv north to Akko, with the planned branch to Karmi'el, and also to Kfar Sava. Wires would run south to Ashqelon and east to Modi'in by 2015, with the A1 fast link to Jerusalem following in 2017 (RG 5.10 p58). Top speeds of 160 to 200 km/h are envisaged on the electrified routes.
However, some environmental lobbyists have questioned the plans on the basis of the current electricity generating mix in the country.