For five years a set of unfinished twin towers have stood watch over Amman, Jordan, construction halted – allegedly crippled by lawsuits. The filthy glass facades soar above a street-level footprint ringed by old hoarding, abandoned building material and trash. The empty skyscrapers stand in silent testimony to both the 2008 world financial crisis and[.....]
A global consortium of engineering and renewables industry giants kicked off a project to build a suite of solar power generating plants in Egypt to produce 2 gigawatts (GW) of electricity and valued at USD $3.5 billion. Terra Solar announced their plan on Friday, adding that they will also build a 200 MW PV module and inverter manufacturing[.....]
The World Bank, the biggest provider of public finance to developing countries, has earmarked 28% of its 2016 budget for projects that mitigate climate change, according to a statement released on Thursday. All of its future spending will take global warming into account, and all projects considered for WBG funding, including health and education, will now[.....]
Mission Control for the Solar Impulse 2 is open for business, ready to guide the solar plane’s first flight around the world. Located in Monaco, the Mission Control Center (MCC) serves as project nerve-center, where a team of analysts and engineers will collect satellite-transmitted flight information to calculate and adjust the plane’s flight path. The plane will take off from[.....]
An unnamed client hired London-based Baharash Architecture to design a luxury home that could fully function off the energy grid. That’s a tall order for any residence in Abu Dhabi, now consider the challenges for one sited in the punishing clime of the hyper-arid Liwa Desert where summer temperatures top 100°F. The star-shaped structure is modestly[.....]
Talk about being self-sufficient, but totally weird! Israeli student designer Naomi Kizhner has designed a collection of jewelry that harvests energy from veins in the human body. The project highlights in a beautiful and artful way how humanity is addicted to energy consumption. It may be a thought experiment more than anything, but these jewels provoke[.....]
Are you tired of seeing the same old giant wind turbines in a field or offshore? And do you worry about their impact on migrating birds? Hooman Tahvildar Akbary from Iran has a solution that is both super efficient and beautiful.
Most Gulf countries import up to 90 percent of their food, which neither bodes well for food security no climate change – since the food that is brought in from Europe and elsewhere has a lot of what are called “food miles.” True to their name, Forward Thinking Architecture proposes a solar-powered hydroponic food belt as[.....]
Saudi Arabia is a desert country with no freshwater resources. Every day the Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC) produces more than three million cubic meters a day of potable water, which requires a great deal of precious energy, so every drop must be conserved. Cue NOMADD.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all, a story pops up about donkeys in Turkey that carry solar panels so that shepherds, who are often out in the field alone for days at a time, have enough energy to power their laptops.
Despite the turbulence tearing through the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have solidified their commitment to clean energy with the newly formed Framework Agreement on Strategic Cooperation between Masdar and King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (K.A.CARE.) It’s leadership we desperately need.
Tesla’s Elon Musk has made serious inroads to implement widespread use of electric vehicles, but he’s also got a hand in one of the most important solar energy deals of the century. Last week SolarCity purchased Silevo in New York in order to significantly scale up production of super efficient, high quality solar panels.
Qatar Solar Energy has unveiled a massive factory that will produce high quality solar panels that make the most of the desert sun, a boon not just for the emirate, but potentially for the entire Middle East.
What if asphalt roads around the world were replaced with modular panels that generate energy during the day and light up at night? Our air would be cleaner and we would spend much less money on fossil fuels. Turns out, thanks in part to a compelling Indiegogo campaign, Solar Roadways may be coming to a highway near[.....]
Geotectura sent us images of their recently completed Porter School of Environmental Studies. The buiding was underwrit through a generous donation by Dame Shirley Porter of the UK. Construction broke ground in December, 2011 on what is being called Israel’s greenest building, and now it’s complete.
Shlomi Mir is one of Israel’s most visionary designers whose recent tumbleweed anti-desertification project earned him a Lexus Design Award alongside giants like Toyo Ito. But its his beautiful rechargeable LED bowl lamp that we are drooling over today – an elegant combination of art, design, tradition, technology and even spirituality.
Saudi Aramco may be taking over the Kingdom’s renewable energy industry in order to hasten the uptake of solar, wind and other alternative sources of energy. The move comes after the government-backed group forecasted a significant slump in export revenue as local oil consumption soars.
Saudi Arabia has announced that the construction industry has five years to “green” up their business. Amid a massive construction boom, the Presidency of Meteorology and Environment (PME) has decreed that all companies must reduce their air, water and noise pollution in keeping with regulations approved in 2008.
Over 400 senior executives will descend on Dubai this week to learn how best to develop and construct photovoltaic (PV) and concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) plants in the region’s top markets including Jordan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Morocco.
Turkey is floating plans to build a new “eco-city” in the southeastern corner of the country, near the border of Syria, and green building experts from Gaziantep want to use energy from burning pistachio shells to keep it running.
Masdar CEO Sultan Al Jaber is moving on to “greener” pastures, according to a statement released by Abu Dhabi investment giant Mubadala. The firm has appointed Al Jaber as its chairman; Masdar’s new CEO has been identified as Ahmad Belhoul.
Many conferences end in handshakes and no action, but Powering the Middle East aims to close deals. This two day summit in Amman hosted by HRH Prince Assem Bin Nayef from Jordan will connect energy and water players in the private sector with government officials capable of turning words into real projects.
Glow-in-the-dark roads recently debuted on a 500 meter stretch of Netherlands highway! Brought to you by the guy behind glow-in-the-dark trees. He’s been burning the candle at both ends – not so much to increase light levels, more to roll out new applications of his natural luminescence designs.
Solar parks in the desert face two major challenges: a lot of dust on the photovoltaic panels and not enough water to clean them. Dust can cause up to a 40% decrease in efficiency of the panels. So there is huge interest to avert this problem. Normally teams of humans come in with squeegees to[.....]
Jordan’s National Electric Power Company (NEPCO) has finally signed a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with US-based First Solar Inc. and the Shams Ma’an Consortium for a 52.5 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) project – the first such project in the kingdom and one of the largest in the region.
Masdar has sued the Spanish government. The multi-pronged company funded in part by the government of Abu Dhabi helped build the world’s first 24/7 solar power plant in Spain, a feat made possible in part with subsidies. But Spain has now cut incentives for renewable energy, which eats into Masdar’s investment.
It has been a long, controversial and expensive road for BrightSource Energy, but their 392 megawatt concentrating solar plant is now finally delivering renewable energy to the California grid and it is the largest plant of its kind in the world.
Saudi Arabia isn’t well known for its architectural subtlety, but Gerber Architekten’s renovation of the King Fahad National Library in Riyadh suggests that the Kingdom may be open to a new approach.
The international renewable energy group IRENA announced the first six recipients of concessional loans for off grid renewable energy projects that are “ready for the shovel,” as Director General Adnan Z. Amin put it in a press conference yesterday. They will receive a combined $41 million from the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD).
There’s something so satisfying about watching the seed of an idea turn into something real – like GE’s Ecomagination Center unveiled at Masdar City outside of Abu Dhabi today.
Do you dream about working towards a greener future in the Middle East but simply don’t know where the good jobs are? If so, you might want to head over to the 7th World Future Energy Summit (WFES), where Masdar Institute of Science and Technology and Reed Exhibitions are hosting a “Green Career Fair.”
Last year, Israel’s parliament announced plans to run entirely off solar energy by the end of 2014, but it turns out the Knesset is going even further to clean up its act. The new “Green Knesset” project will completely overhaul its ethos to stand as a symbol of the country’s environmental revolution.
The current road linking Abu Dhabi and Dubai, E111 is said to be one of the most dangerous, which killed roughly 9 out of 100,000 people in 2012, but the new state of the art E311 highway will be one of the world’s greenest.
EnviroMission’s unique solar energy generation technology is picking up steam and the Middle East will be one of the first regions to give the technology a fair chance to succeed.
Qatar has promised a carbon neutral 2022 World Cup, but we know from the Masdar City experiment how hard that is to achieve. Still, here are five dubious steps AECOM and Zaha Hadid Architects are reported to be taking to support that goal with their joint design – Al-Wakrah Stadium.
Israel’s Ormat Technologies has brokered a deal with eBay to power the online auction giant’s new data center in Utah using Recovered Energy Generation (REG) – a groundbreaking project made possible by new energy legislation.
For outsiders, SIWA oasis in Egypt is a wonderful place to visit precisely because “civilization” has been so slow to arrive there. But for locals, the gift of a new 20MW solar energy plant will be received like a mountain of gold.
Richard Branson’s recent commitment to this year’s Zayed Future Energy Prize jury speaks volumes not only about Abu Dhabi’s leadership in energy innovation, but also the faith world leaders place in the emirate’s (many) initiatives.
Energy industry experts are predicting a new solar manufacturing boom next year after an extended slump, and they claim that the Middle East is ranked among the top three leading markets in the industry.
iLAND’s Solar Packs for Peace-keepers, Festivals, Eco-jocks and Alpha Wolves Who Travel with the Sun
Whether you travel alone or in packs, there is a new range of portable solar solutions by the Swiss company iLAND (said island) that will put crummy little solar panels on your backpack to shame: iLand has developed and now manufactures portable solar power packs for events with thousands and those small enough for one.
The flame of an initiative launched in the largely Coptic neighborhood of Mokkatam in Southwest Cairo is at risk of flickering out amid ongoing political turmoil that has enflamed the city once again.
Two of the top four oil-producing OPEC members, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, have joined forces in a push to secure $1 billion in funding for Middle East solar-power, Bloomberg reports.
An ambitious collaboration between Egypt and renewables giant Masdar may be coming back to life following a two year hibernation. Is this a bona fide resurrection of a visionary joint venture or just a soundbite to broadcast the commercial ambitions of Masdar?
A five-story apartment building in Hamburg, Germany gets its juice from its algae skin. It’s an example of the kind of architectural innovation that could readily transplant to the Middle East. So why is partnership between designers, investors and government largely absent in this region? The continuing drought of global investment requires innovative approaches to[.....]
The London Array is Masdar’s largest renewable energy project to date, but the government-supported research and development group have no intention of stopping there. With a 20 percent stake in the offshore wind project that will generate enough energy to power half a million UK homes, the group is ready to keep up the momentum.
More setbacks for Middle East solar or the only way a big dream can move ahead? DESERTEC has canceled its commercial partnership to build a solar super-grid with Dii GmbH, according to a press release issued by DESERTEC.
A couple of Harvard students have enlisted the world’s most popular sport as a generator of portable power. SOCCKET ball, the brainchild of Jessica Matthews and Julia Silverman, is a toy that can produce renewable energy anywhere. The inventors stopped in at the US Embassy in Jordan to conduct educational programs for children and workshops[.....]
While political unrest continues to simmer in Turkey, elsewhere business continues apace. The country recently invited expressions of interest to participate in a Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) clean energy pricing scheme for solar energy generation projects larger than 1MW. Within a mere five days, 500 applications poured in.
The Middle East’s leading clean energy developer, Masdar has launched the very first renewable energy plant to be built in The Seychelles – the 6MW Port Victoria Wind Farm.
Once the most powerful seat of learning in Egypt, Alexandria has some catching up to do when it comes to renewable energy. Which may be why the governor has entered into an agreement with a Catholic technical institute to bolster photovoltaic education and installations.
Turkey’s largest wind power plant has broken ground and is expected to generate enough clean energy to electrify up to 170,000 homes.
HH General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi (left), HH Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan National Security Advisor for the UAE and Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council visit Masdar City’s 10 MW PV plant in 2011. Proponents of environmental reform (renewable energy, greener economy) are racing[.....]