Israel plans expansion of solar power

Israel is planning an expansion of its solar-generated electricity with preparations to bring the first of more than 40 new solar plants onto the grid this summer.

Arava Power is building the plants, including a $30 million, 20-acre Ketura Sun solar field in Israel’s scorching Negev desert, which will begin providing electricity to some 1,000 residents this summer.

Israel is pushing to become a world leader in alternative energy, with the government backing cutting-edge technologies and setting a goal to have 10 percent of its electricity generated by alternative means by 2020.

Right now, Israel depends almost entirely on imported coal and natural gas for its energy. — ap