Greenpeace: Israel Can Generate Half Its Electricity Without Polluting

Zafrir Rinat
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Zafrir Rinat

Israel can and must revolutionize its energy consumption such that within 30 years half of its electricity comes from renewable sources, the international environmental group Greenpeace says in a new report.

Currently, only about 1 percent of the nation’s energy comes from renewable sources.

The comprehensive report, prepared with the Israeli firm Eco Energy Ltd., will be presented on Tuesday at the Ashdod Sustainability Conference, cosponsored by Haaretz and the Ashdod municipality.

According to the report, power production from “green” sources could be considerably expanded through broader use of solar energy and wind power, and through methods such as cogeneration − use of a heat engine or power station to simultaneously generate electricity and useful heat.

At the same time, Israel could use efficiency incentives and demand-management technologies to reduce its electricity consumption by 15 percent.

The report’s authors also believe Israel could cut its energy for transportation in half through wider use of electric vehicles. This would require government intervention and significant infrastructure investments, but the accumulated savings in reduced fuel purchases could be NIS 94 billion through 2050.

These suggestions would also have enormous environmental implications, including less pollution and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 58 percent, the authors say.

The report recommends the government establish an energy efficiency fund, approve quotas for solar installations and cut taxes on vehicles that don’t use petroleum.  

A wind turbine in the Golan Heights.Credit: Yaron Kaminsky