Since Hamas took control of Gaza in the summer of 2007, Israeli citizens have been battered with rocket attacks in Sderote, and more recently Ashkelon. Some media outlets call Israel’s interference with fuel transfer across to Gaza “a seige” but for Israelis it is just a matter of survival. Looking beyond politics and focusing on solutions for today, a Gaza teacher has adopted Israeli solar energy technology to power his home during the latest blackout, according to Maan News.
Not long ago, we reported on Palestinian taxi drivers souping up their engines to run on falafel oil; the latest is that a Gaza teacher, Mahmoud Shahin, is using solar panels to generate electricity. There have been weeks of rolling blackouts, the newspaper reports, and the 59 year-old Shahin, a chemistry teacher from the town of Jabaliya, in the northern Gaza Strip, has turned to solar power.
He’d purchased the panels eight years ago from a Palestinian who’d imported them from Israel. Only recently had Shahin obtained the electrical conductors he needed to start generating electricity for his house.
Gaza’s only power plant was shut down on November 13 when Israel blocked deliveries
of European-funded fuel. Reports say that about 70% of Gaza’s 1.5 million residents are without electricity. This Green Prophet says that if Europe wants to help Gaza help itself, solar power technology should be funded and adopted wildly throughout the Strip.
Shahin says he has dreams of lighting all the hospitals in Gaza with solar power. The power cuts have affected the most basic functions of hospitals. Gaza’s major hospitals use generators during the blackouts, but the total closure means that fuel and spare parts are scarce.
Shahin points out that solar power “is not a new idea” and that he didn’t invent a thing, but implemented a modern technology that is already available. A man close to our own green heart.
Images: Maan News
See more positive green news from Palestine:
Electric Cars in Gaza: Necessity is the Mother of Invention
A Natural Gas Alternative In The Middle East