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Relying on the sun
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 17 - 01 - 2019

The hotel built the station with technical and financial support from the Grid Connected Small Scale Photovoltaic System Project of the United Nations Development Programme's Global Environmental Finance Unit, and the opening was attended by the ministers of environment, investment and electricity.
Yasmine Fouad, the minister of environment, said the project opens the door to using environment-friendly technologies in all sectors and shows how the private sector can behave in both a commercially and socially responsible way.
The government, said Fouad, is actively pursuing the UN sustainable development goals, and is well aware of the potential harm climate change can cause to Egypt's tourism, energy and industrial sectors. Projects such as this solar power station, she added, had the potential to help every sector.
Minister of Tourism Rania Al-Mashat said the launch of a solar-powered station on a hotel roof was a practical implementation of sustainable development strategies. Projects such as this, she added, offer multiple benefits, including honing the competitive edge of the Egyptian product by allowing tour agents to promote Egypt as a destination to environmentally aware customers.
Installing solar power stations is an essential part of the Ministry of Electricity's strategy to promote the renewable energy across sectors, said Electricity Minister Mohamed Shaker. The ministry aims to generate 20 per cent of the total energy needs from renewable sources such as the sun, wind and water by 2020, increasing to 42 per cent by 2035.
Nine hotels will receive solar energy stations this year, reported Atef Yacoub, a representative of the company that executed the project, helping the hotels combat rising costs and showing the world that Egypt is more determined than ever to move towards a green economy.


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