Israel’s southernmost city of Eilat, which hosts the annual Eilat Eilot Renewable Energy Conference, will now get a further renewable energy boost by receiving a concession to build a new renewable energy center. The Eilat-Eilot Group which has put on the renewable energy show for the past four years, has been given the concession from the Office of the Chief Scientist at the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor as reported in Globes.
The Eilat-Eilot group that won the concession has in itself some very important players in the clean technology industry, including Elbit Systems Ltd. ,thermal energy producer, Ormat Industries Ltd, the ProSeed Venture Capital Fund, Britain’s Consensus Business Group, and Ben Gurion University of the Negev well known for its solar energy development projects with such companies as Zenith Solar.
The Eilat Eilot Clean Technology Center will not be located in the resort city itself, but in the Arava valley to the north, which is already a natural laboratory for a number of clean tech projects, particularly in the field of solar energy. Some of these include Arava Power, of which the German industrial giant Siemens now owns a large share, and the innovative “tulip turbine” solar energy company Aora Solar.
The winning consortium will invest NIS 57 million in the new center over the next five years with the Chief Scientist department of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor investing a considerable amount that will match the sum invested by the members of the Eilat-Eilot group.
Solar energy is currently being developed by a number of Israeli companies; solar water heaters have been widely used by Israelis since the mid 1950’s. They are now in use in may parts of the world, including neighboring countries like Egypt.
More than solar energy development will be featured at the Eilat Eilot Clean Technology Center. Other forms of renewable energy, including wind energy on the disputed Golan Heights, and energy from ocean waves and currents by SDE Energy Company, which just completed a pilot wave energy plant in Jaffa Port, will also receive attention.
All of these combined with other clean technology developments such as electric cars will result in enough projects to keep the new clean technology center busy for years to come.
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