Solar energy field near Eilat gets green light


JERUSALEM — Israel’s Public Utility Authority has granted a license for the country’s largest solar energy field to go online.

The provisional license was granted Monday to the Arava Power Company for the field at Kibbutz Ketura, located about 16 miles north of Eilat. 

Construction on the $150 million Ketura field is set to begin at the end of this year. It will be completed in mid-2014, according to Arava.

The field will be built on 148 acres of agricultural land at the kibbutz that has not been cultivated on a regular basis due to Israel’s water shortage. It will generate 40 megawatts, equal to one-third of the electricity consumption in Eilat during peak daylight hours.  

Arava already has launched the only fully operational commercial solar field in the region and is the first company to secure a license for a field in the Bedouin sector.