Energy Matters November 2017

Energy Matters
Energy Matters
November 2017

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his recent trade mission to Israel. (Office of Gov. Walker)

Joint U.S.-Israel Foundation to Finance $4.8 million in Clean Energy Projects

On Nov. 5, the U.S.-Israel Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation announced that it will provide $4.8 million in funding for five joint Israel-U.S. clean energy projects. “BIRD Energy actively engages in fostering partnerships between Israeli and American companies, focusing on energy efficiency, which is critical to the global economy and environment, as well as cleaner, renewable energy,” said Eitan Yudilevich, executive director of the BIRD Foundation. “By providing financial support to both partners, the development and commercialization of such technologies are accelerated, bringing economic value to both countries.”

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U.S., Israel Bolster Energy Ties to Africa

Israel and the United States are slated to sign a memorandum of understanding on Dec. 4 that will enable the Jewish state to join the Power Africa initiative. Spearheaded by the United States, the program seeks to connect 60 million households in Africa to the electricity grid by 2030. “Israel is becoming a partner in one of the biggest aid programs available today,” said Eli Groner, the director general at Israel’s Prime Minister’s Office. He added that joining the Power Africa initiative “is the manifestation of our unparalleled relationship with the U.S., assisting in the deepening of our ties with African nations.”

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Wisconsin Signs Water Pacts with Israel

In November, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker conducted a trade mission to Israel, during which his state’s water council signed two agreements to boost cooperation. The first accord, between the Water Council of Wisconsin and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, will increase collaboration and eventually establish an arm of Wisconsin’s National Science Foundation center in Israel. The second agreement, between Wisconsin’s Water Council and the Israel Innovation Authority, will create a new research partnership on piloting and producing new applications for the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District and other Wisconsin water utilities. “These partnerships will strengthen the sector in both countries, and are expected to open new markets to water technology companies in Wisconsin and Israel,” said Gov. Walker.

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Israel, Egypt Reportedly Discuss Gas Exports

Top energy officials from Egypt and Israel recently discussed the potential sale of Israeli gas to Egypt, as reported by Bloomberg. According to the unnamed source, Egyptian Oil Minister Tarek El-Molla told Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz that Israeli gas exports to Egypt is still under consideration. However, the main obstacle to a deal is resolving the $2 billion fine that a Swiss court determined Egypt’s natural gas companies must pay to Israel’s electricity provider for a previous deal. The partners in the Leviathan field, Israel’s biggest offshore site, view Egypt as a potential market for their gas. Houston, Texas-based Noble Energy Inc. and Israel’s Delek Group hold the biggest stakes in the gas pool.

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