Maslul Sun field in Moshav Maslul in the Arava..
(photo credit: ARAVA POWER COMPANY)
Arava Power Company, the firm responsible for Israel’s first commercial solar field, will be investing profits from its six newest solar fields in various social organizations.
The solar fields in question began operating in the Negev and Arava deserts this spring, with the largest – Maslul Sun – at 8.9 megawatts capacity on Moshav Maslul.
Company management determined that a portion of the profits generated from the six fields will be used to fund social projects, a choice Arava Power also made in the past at its first solar field, Ketura Sun.
Among the four organizations selected to benefit from these proceeds is Latet B’Eilat, where activities focus on running a soup kitchen that feeds schoolchildren as well as workshops for youth at risk and support for cancer patients, the company said. A second organization is Micha Beersheba, which assists deaf children and their families.
A third is Moving Traditions, a group that helps Jewish youth in the United States by providing synagogue and community center programming, the company said. The final recipient of funds will be the Red Mountain Therapeutic Riding Center in the Arava, which serves children, adolescents and adults with developmental disabilities, motor disabilities, learning difficulties, chronic diseases and behavioral and emotional disorders.
“Arava Power is a company with a worldview that combines business with Zionism,” said Arava Power co-founder and executive vice-chairman David Rosenblatt. “The contribution granted to these organizations reflects the responsibility we feel toward the environment and the communities in which we operate.”
In addition to Maslul Sun, four of the other new Arava Desert fields included in this decision are the 6.4-megawatt Shoval Sun, the 6.8-megawatt site at Kibbutz Yotvata, the 6.4-megawatt facility at Kibbutz Grofit and the 7-megawatt site at Kibbutz Elifaz.
The sixth, smaller project, is a 0.45-megawatt Erez Rooftops venture, at Kibbutz Erez in the northwestern Negev.
Arava Power Company launched the country’s first medium-sized solar field, the 4.95-megawatt Ketura Sun, in June 2011, after being founded in 2006 by Rosenblatt, Kibbutz Ketura resident Ed Hofland, and American-Israeli solar entrepreneur Yosef Abramowitz.
The four social organizations already benefiting from Ketura Sun profits include Innovation: Africa, Bustan, The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity and the Red Mountain Therapeutic Riding Center.