Jordan to host regional renewable energy commission
Feb 16, 2011 - energycentral.com
The recently formed Arab Renewable Energy Commission (AREC) has selected Jordan
as the location of its headquarters, Jordan Renewable Energy Society (JRES)
Director Mohammad Taani said.
The non-governmental commission, which aims to promote the development and
promotion of renewable energy in the region, comprises 13 Arab states: Jordan,
Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Qatar, Libya, Bahrain, Tunisia,
Algeria, Morocco and the UAE.
Taani noted that although many Arab countries have pledged to boost the use
of renewable energy up to 10 per cent of their energy mix by the end of the
decade, many are currently projected to fall short of the benchmark.
"Arab countries still haven't considered the importance of renewable
energy. Countries across the world are investing billions in renewable energy,
but there is nothing on the ground in the Arab world," he told The Jordan
Times over the phone.
AREC will coordinate awareness campaigns in various Arab countries on the
benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency, underscoring the potential
of the technology to spur job growth in Arab countries, Taani said.
As part of its efforts to advocate for green energy, AREC will also help arrange
the Global Green Tech Forum in various Arab states in order to gather representatives
of the private and public sectors to discuss potentials in the renewable energy
The second Global Green Tech Forum is slated to be held in Manama, Bahrain,
this fall, with the 2012 conference to be organised in Saudi Arabia, Taani
Meanwhile, the JRES is preparing to float tenders for small-scale grid connectivity
projects using photovoltaic and concentrated solar panel technology in the
According to Taani, the society has completed feasibility studies for the
three projects, which will generate a combined 20 megawatts.
"It is small, but we need to start somewhere," he said, indicating
that the Kingdom's electricity grid has yet to handle large-scale renewable
HRH Prince Asem Ben Nayef serves as president of the JRES, which was formed
to help the country reach the goals of the national energy strategy that calls
for renewable energy to account for 7 percent of the Kingdom's energy mix
by 2015 and 10 per cent by 2020.
Renewable sources currently account for less than 1 per cent of energy consumed
in the country, according to official figures.