Arava to invest $150M in new PV solar field

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Arava Power Company inks provisional license for large Negev-based photovoltaic solar field.

The Public Utility Authority granted the Arava Power Company a provisional license to for a large-size photovoltaic solar installation north of Eilat, an Arava Power press release said.

According to the company, the new solar field will be the biggest of its kind Israel, commanding a total investment of $150 million.

Construction of the field, which will stretch across 148 acres, is expected to begin in late 2012 with a target timeline for completion of by mid-late 2014.

Once completed and operations, it is expected to generate 40 megawatts – equal to one-third of the power consumption during Eilat’s peak daylight hours.

The field’s total hours of operation are expected to reach 2,200 hours annually.

An environmental impact survey commissioned ahead of the bid revealed, according to the company, that the field is expected to reduce 60,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year, and will prevent the emission of millions of tons of greenhouse gases in the course of its operation.

“The large solar field at Kibbutz Ketura is another achievement for Arava Power that will continue to pave the way for a thriving and profitable solar industry and contribute to the Israeli economy and its environmental and energy security,” David Rosenblatt, co-founder and vice-chairman of Arava Power, said.

“The large Ketura field will put Israel on the global map of forward-looking countries producing significant megawatts of electricity from solar energy,” Jon Cohen, CEO of Arava Power added.

Arava Power previously launched the only fully-operational commercial solar field in the region, and was the first to secure a solar license in the Bedouin sector.