According to estimates by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics in 2011, Palestine imports about 570 MW of electricity annually. Almost 92 percent of the imports come from Israel. The dependence on imported electricity, combined with the constraints on the Palestinian economy due to the Paris Protocol, resulted in high electricity prices. Today, retail electricity cost for Palestinians stands at 19 US cents per kwh.
The high electricity cost is burdensome for a population of limited and relatively low income. Further, it contributes to high production and service costs for Palestinian businesses, making them less competitive. In addition, the delivery of basic services, including education and health, suffers from these high costs.
FFP realizes that the investments required to affect prices are enormous. Yet, it believes that focusing its interventions to reduce the costs of electricity in the larger service providing organizations in health and education can substantially reduce operating costs and contribute greatly to their sustainability and development.
As such, FFP developed the Alternative Technology Program intended to support larger non-profit education and health sector facilities in Palestine. In addition, the program is intended to help Palestinian municipalities meet some of their electricity needs. The program will be implemented throughout Palestine.
Strategic Objectives of the Program
The strategic objective of the program is to enhance sustainability of education and healthcare organizations, as well as municipalities.
The specific objective of the program is to reduce the operating costs of key education and healthcare service providers and municipalities by reducing electricity costs.
i. Development of Solar Power Fund for Education Institutions: The fund will be utilized to build small- to medium-size solar power plants to generate electricity to serve the needs of universities and higher education institutions.
ii. Development of a Solar Power Fund for Healthcare Institutions: The fund will be utilized to build small- to medium-size solar power plants to generate electricity to serve the needs of hospitals and medical centers.