The Ministries of Energy, Economy and Industry and Environmental Protection announce today (Wednesday) the launch of a new program for the distribution of grants for energy efficiency and the reduction of greenhouse gases. Under the Industrial Factories program, small businesses and local authorities will receive grants of about NIS 70 million to promote projects that reduce energy and pollution expenditures from factories, businesses and local authorities. Among the projects are lighting replacement, and air conditioning or heating in more efficient appliances – a move that should reduce electricity consumption.
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Government ministries claim that under the program, grants of up to 20% and no more than NIS 3 million will be distributed for each project, with an additional grant of up to NIS 3 million for projects that incorporate new Israeli technologies in the fields of energy efficiency and greenhouse gas reduction.
The current rate of grants is the fourth in number in the last two years, in which the state has invested NIS 300 million in the field in 276 projects. According to government ministries, this streamlining is expected to lead to annual savings of about NIS 283 million a year, which will lead to a decrease of only about 1.2% in electricity consumption, compared to an increase of about 7% recorded only last summer.
The current plan, blessed as it may be, will not reduce the huge gap that the state is supposed to fill in the area of energy efficiency, which has been demonstrably ignored over the years. In fact, as early as 2010 the Ministry of Energy issued a series of reprimands at plants that did not submit a plan, claiming that full energy efficiency would be reduced to eliminating the need to build new power plants.
In 2014, the State Comptroller found that the field was almost abandoned, and in practice the conduct until recent years was slow and did not affect the economy – the state does not force the law to replace lighting, air conditioning or heating on large entities in the economy, and the actions are private initiatives. Mercury between the customer and the installer at the cost of the annual savings.
In any case, Minister of Energy Yuval Steinitz, Minister of Economy Amir Peretz and Minister of Environmental Protection Gila Gamliel will distribute the funding to the various bodies, and all of them, as expected, welcomed the move.
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