Palestinian Investment Fund plans to build three solar farms and put solar energy into 500 schools

September 11, 2018

Ali Sawafta, Nidal al-Mughrabi.

RAMALLAH/GAZA (Reuters) – From orderly rows of solar panels in a field in the West Bank to the chaotic rooftops of Gaza, Palestinians are hoping that harnessing the energy of the sun can reduce their dependence on Israel for electricity.

The West Bank only gets around three-quarters of the power its 3 million people need, imported mostly from Israel and, to a far lesser extent, Jordan.

In the Gaza Strip, power generation is so paltry that, even with imports from Israel and Egypt, it gets just one-third of what it needs – so the 2 million Gazans struggle on with an average of just four hours of electricity a day.

Individuals have taken it on themselves to install solar panels, trailing cables down the side of buildings to keep fans whirring or to power televisions and other appliances.

The number of panels in the enclave has increased four-fold in four years and they are now dotted on most rooftops and balcony on homes, schools, hospitals, shops, banks and mosques in a place where the sun shines 320 days a year.

In Gaza’s Nusseirat refugee camp, Sabreen Abu Shawiesh said installing solar panels on the metal roof of her one-floor house had changed her family’s life: “We almost had no electricity, nowadays fans are working all day.”

The sun may be free, but the technology is not, and Palestinians say their ability to import solar panels has been hampered by Israeli border controls.

In Gaza, which has endured years of Israeli and Egyptian sanctions aimed at isolating Islamist Hamas which rules the territory, tensions raised by weekly border protest since March 30 have increased the problem.

Israel has blocked all imports into the enclave except for humanitarian supplies.

Even before then, entrepreneurs in Gaza say they have sometimes been banned from importing various kinds of batteries – including those used for solar power – by Israel, on the grounds that they might be used for military purposes.

A spokesman for Israel’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories said Israel had not imposed any import restrictions on solar panel technology and did not consider it to be “dual purpose”.


In the West Bank, ruled by President Mahmoud Abbas’s Western-backed Palestinian Authority, the public and private sectors have launched projects to diversify power sources to get cheaper electricity and more self-sufficiency.

“The government is in dire need of individual initiatives and investments to provide power so that it can become independent of the occupation (Israel), step by step,” Shifa’ Abu Sa’adi, head of natural resources at the Palestinian economy ministry, told Reuters.

The Authority’s Palestinian Investment Fund (PIF) plans to build three solar farms and put solar energy into 500 schools. The three new plants will generate 22 megawatts per day. The West Bank needs 1,400 megawatts but currently only 1,100 megawatts are available.

Larger solar projects would require more land but it is scarce because, under the Oslo peace accords of the mid-1990s, Israel retains control of much of the land of the West Bank.

“We will be in a good position if we reach 5 or 10 per cent of the required electricity supply for Palestine in general from solar energy,” said Azem Bishara, chief executive officer of Massader, a subsidiary of the PIF.

Bishara said Massader intended to invest $200 million in renewable energy over the next six years to generate an additional 200 megawatts.

The Gaza Strip only has one power plant, which generated 140 megawatts in 1999 when it was built but now only produces 23 megawatts. The enclave imports 30 megawatts from Egypt and 120 from Israel. This is less than a third of the Strip’s daily needs – estimated at up to 600 megawatts a day.

Last week the European Union completed Gaza’s biggest solar farm which will provide 0.5 megawatts per day to fuel the Southern Gaza Desalination Plant, also funded by the EU.

U.N. Deputy Special Coordinator for Middle East Peace Process Jamie McGoldrick this week urged Israel to allow U.N.-purchased emergency fuel needed for backup generators at vital health, water and sanitation operations.

Read more:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2021 February 22


Good way of describing, and good post to get data regarding my presentation subject, which i am going to
deliver in school.

Feel free to surf to my web blog :: cbd sleep gummies


2021 April 12


You have made some really good points there. I checked on the
net to learn more about the issue and found most people will go along with your views on this website.

My site buy cbd gummies


2021 April 13


It’s really a great and helpful piece of info. I’m happy that you just shared this useful information with us.
Please keep us informed like this. Thank you
for sharing.

Also visit my web-site CBD gummies for anxiety


2021 April 13


Admiring the persistence you put into your blog and detailed information you present.
It’s good to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the
same outdated rehashed information. Excellent read!
I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m adding your RSS feeds to my
Google account.

My web blog cbd products


2021 April 14


We are a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our
community. Your website offered us with valuable information to work
on. You’ve done an impressive job and our entire community will be grateful to you.

Here is my web site cbd


2021 April 16


What’s up to every one, the contents present at this site are
truly remarkable for people knowledge, well, keep up
the good work fellows.

my homepage; best delta 8


2021 April 30


Tremendous issues here. I’m very happy to see your article.

Thank you so much and I am looking ahead to touch you.

Will you kindly drop me a e-mail?

my web blog – best delta 8 thc carts


2021 May 2


You actually make it appear really easy together with your presentation but
I find this matter to be actually something that
I think I’d by no means understand. It seems too complex and very huge for me.

I am taking a look ahead for your next put up, I’ll try to get the cling of it!

My web site – best delta 8 carts


2021 May 3


Thank you for another wonderful article. The place else may just anyone get that kind of info in such a
perfect method of writing? I have a presentation next week, and
I’m on the look for such information.

Here is my homepage: delta 8 thc store


2021 June 2


Hi there I am so excited I found your web site, I really found you by
accident, while I was looking on Yahoo for something else,
Regardless I am here now and would just like to say thanks a lot for a remarkable post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through it all at the minute but I have book-marked it and also included your RSS
feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read
more, Please do keep up the awesome work.

Feel free to visit my web blog … online slot


2021 June 3


Good information. Lucky me I came across your blog by accident (stumbleupon).
I’ve book-marked it for later!

My webpage … thc gummies


2021 June 3


I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you design this
website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
Plz respond as I’m looking to construct my own blog and
would like to find out where u got this from. thanks a lot

Also visit my web site :: Best Delta 8 THC Gummies


2021 June 3


It is the best time to make some plans for the future
and it is time to be happy. I have read this post and if I could I want to suggest you few
interesting things or tips. Perhaps you could
write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read even more things
about it!

My blog post: buy thc gummies


2021 June 20


Hey there this is kinda of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have
to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have
no coding know-how so I wanted to get advice from someone with experience.
Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Feel free to surf to my homepage delta 8 gummies


2021 June 21


Very descriptive blog, I liked that bit. Will there
be a part 2?

Here is my page: Observer


2021 June 21


Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was once a leisure account it.
Look advanced to far brought agreeable from you!
By the way, how could we keep up a correspondence?

Here is my blog post; buy followers


2021 June 21


This website really has all of the information I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to

Also visit my page: Instagram likes


2021 June 21


Hello, Neat post. There’s an issue with your
web site in internet explorer, could test this? IE nonetheless
is the market chief and a big component of folks will miss your excellent writing because of this problem.

Check out my web blog: purchase Instagram followers