Landau: Israel must break its addiction to ‘black gold’

National Infrastructures minister says addiction to oil linked to an addiction to automobiles, declaring that “we are addicts of states who provide the oil."

Landau Eilat-Eilot 311 (photo credit: .)
Landau Eilat-Eilot 311
(photo credit: .)
“We are addicted to black gold, heavily addicted,” National Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau said Wednesday, during remarks on the pressing need to develop alternative energy sources.
Landau’s comments came during a panel discussion at the fourth annual Eilat-Eilot Renewable Energy Conference, dealing with state and privatesector cooperation in developing energy alternatives.
The minister said the addiction to oil was linked to an addiction to automobiles, declaring that “we are addicts of the states who provide the oil. Every stop at the gas station gives money to terror organizations, and to radical elements of Islam in Iran and in al-Qaida.
The Western world is addicted to this drug, and the question is how to free ourselves from it.”
Landau went a step further, saying that “the Arab world’s fight against Israel is part of Islam’s struggle to defeat the West. The struggle for oil is the struggle over the future of western Democracy.”
Throughout the conference, Landau has expressed his belief that Israel must develop alternative sources of energy and be a leader in developing technology in the field.
His ministry has stressed a number of possibilities for how this can be done, including the use of recent Israeli natural gas finds to create methanol; biogas development; improving preexisting energy technology; energy conservation programs; and increased development of electric automobiles.
To encourage the use of electric cars, Landau said the consumer should have greater access to electric recharging stations.
Landau and his ministry have been at the forefront of this year’s conference, and has spoken time and again of his plans to implement a 2007 cabinet decision mandating that 10 percent of electricity must come from renewable sources by 2020.
The Eilat-Eilot Renewable Energy International Conference and Exhibition is the biggest annual event in Israel covering renewable energy. As it does every year, this year’s conference focused largely on technological innovation and business opportunities in the field and brought together thousands of participants from across the world.
Among other proposals, there were five main initiatives that were either launched or discussed at the conference, including the government’s 10- year plan to boost alternative fuels and mobile power R&D in Israel, a NIS 2.2 billion plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, plans to increase tariffs and regulation for utility-scale solar power feed-in, plans for a 5MWp solar farm in the Arava desert, and the Clean Tech Action plan launched by Eureka Israeli Chairmanship, a European platform for industrial R&D cooperation and a sponsor of the conference.