Despite having some of the best solar irradiation in the world, not to mention several leading solar energy producers, Israel has been relatively slow to take up this clean, renewable energy source.
In part, this can be attributed to a legislative environment that has favored fossil fuels – at whatever environmental and social cost. But the Public Utilities Authority has stepped up its game to make it a lot easier for independent households and businesses to both produce and consume their own energy.
“Solar power has become economical in Israel, and we’re at the start of a process which will change the urban landscape over the coming years,” Renewable Energy Association of Israel CEO Eitan Parnas told Globes.
Sources told the paper that the Knesset’s flat roof is perfect for a large 1MW solar array that could potentially generate one quarter of the building’s energy needs during full session. During limited sessions, the rooftop panels will make the structure completely independent of the national grid.
The Israeli parliament building will be among the world’s first to embrace solar energy, but Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince was way ahead of the game.
The court of HH Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan – the ruler of one of the world’s most oil-rich nations – was crowned with active solar panels back in 2011, when President Obama was still prevaricating over the issue of Jimmy Carter’s White House solar plan.
Despite its Leviathan natural gas discovery, and a tenacious oil shale scheme, it’s good to know that Israel is embracing clean energy as well – where it counts the most.
Image of Knesset, Shutterstock