Palestinians living in the Masafer Yatta village have been secretly pursuing wind and solar energy projects in order to mitigate a serious shortfall of energy in the village.
But the 150,000 residents that live in Area C, which has been under Israeli control since 1993, live in constant fear that Israeli authorities will demolish their projects. Why? Because Israelis are opposed to any new infrastructure projects that are built outside of construction and planning laws.Demolishing energy
On Tuesday, Israeli officials delivered “stop work orders” for wind and solar power systems being development in four villages in Masafer Yatta, Maan news reports .
Since mid-2011, Israel’s army “has demolished electricity pylons in two villages, threatened to knock down solar power systems in six others, and cut the electricity wires in another, citing a lack of legal permits,” according to the paper.
“Only one village in Masafer Yatta has ever been able to connect to the Palestinian electricity grid,” they added, and that was only achieved after serious “wrangling with the military.”
Regulations that date back to the days before Israel occupied the West Bank stipulate that Palestinians who live in Area C are required to receive permission from Israeli authorities to build on their land, but these permits are very difficult to receive, sources say.
The Sun comes from God
In the meantime, lacking access to the main grid and battling through the hardships of no energy, industrious Palestinians have organized to seek foreign aid in order to develop a small network of renewable energy generators that can meet their basic needs. The problem is, they are not in compliance with planning law and the facilities developed are subject to demolition.
The paper reports that in the South Hebron hills, residents have created a solar power station that is sheltered in an”underground bunker camouflaged by bracken and heavy sacks.”
“The sun comes from God, not from the Israeli authorities,” says Jad Isaac, the director of the Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem, and the Palestinians should be allowed to maintain their self-sufficiency. Others claim that Israel is deliberately pushing past the possibility that peace will ever prevail.
Whatver the case may be, this story has at least one silver lining: the display of humanity’s extraordinary resilience.
:: Maan News
image via MaanImages/Charlotte Alfred
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