See also:
» 13.05.2010 - Western Sahara "not part of EFTA-Morocco free trade"
» 21.09.2009 - Rescuers abandon search for survivors
» 20.03.2009 - $1.5 million grant for Morocco tech development
» 16.12.2008 - EU grants advanced status to Morocco
» 09.12.2008 - EU-Moroccan deal "illegal"; UN expert
» 02.12.2008 - McDonald's, Wikipedia targeted by Morocco
» 13.05.2008 - Morocco urged to probe migrant deaths
» 30.04.2008 - Morocco's fatal blaze blamed on greed

China wholesale online through

Houlihan's coupons

Finn autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden på
Gazpacho Bųrek Kartoffelsalat Taboulé Gulasj Albóndigas Cevapi Rougaille Japrak sarma Zwiebelbrot Klopse Giouvetsi Paella Pljeskavica Pica pau Pulpo a la gallega Flammkuchen Langosj Tapenade Chatsjapuri Pasulj Lassi Kartoffelpuffer Tortilla Raznjici Knödel Lentejas Bœuf bourguignon Korianderchutney Brenneslesuppe Proia Sębsi kavurma Sardinske calamares

Autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden finner du på
Réunion Portugal Aserbajdsjan Serbia Tyskland Seychellene Bosnia Spania Libanon Belgia India Kroatia Hellas Italia Ungarn Komorene Georgia Mauritius Ųsterrike Romania Frankrike

Morocco | Western Sahara
Economy - Development

Sun power project "may eye Western Sahara location"

Desertec's own map of its planned solar energy red, including production in Western Sahara

© Desertec
afrol News, 16 March
- A giant Sahara sun power project, which could provide Europe with 15% of its electricity needs, is criticised for not revealing where it plans to establish its pilot project. Human rights activists fear Desertec is eying Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara as its location.

The Germany-based Society for Threatened People (GfbV) is demanding that Desertec CEO Paul von Son reveals where the giant scheme's pilot project will be located. Mr von Son has held talks with the Moroccan Energy Ministry about the start-up of the first phase of the euro 400 billion initiative.

In interviews with the German press, the Desertec leader only has revealed the pilot project would be located in a coastal area of Morocco, not deeply into the Sahara desert.

Ulrich Delius, Africa researcher at GfbV, says he fears that this could only mean a location within the Moroccan-occupied territory of Western Sahara, "because only there, there still exist larger unexploited areas close to the coast." Most of the proper Moroccan coast is densely populated or reserved for tourism development.

The German rights group is now asking politicians supporting Desertec to make sure the energy consortium does not establish solar energy plants in Western Sahara. Desertec's supporters include German Economy Minister Rainer Brüderle and Professor Klaus Toepfer, the former director of the UN's Environment Programme (UNEP).

Mr Toepfer earlier this month agreed to an appointment as "strategic adviser" to Desertec. He is to assure the giant project is to benefit of participants in Europe, but also in the Middle East and North Africa. "It is vital to guarantee that the countries in which electricity is produced from renewable energies also benefit in no small measure. This will be my role," Mr Toepfer said upon his appointment.

Minister Brüderle earlier this month had promised Desertec massive support through its export promotion programmes. The Desertec consortium includes Germany's most known giant companies, such as Deutsche Bank and Siemens and the country's leading energy companies E.on and RWE. Also Swiss-Swedish ABB is on the team.

Desertec plans to install large numbers of solar panels in large parts of the Sahara desert in a giant scheme that aims at producing up to 15 percent of Europe's electricity needs. Plans are for landing power in South Spain, meaning it needs to pass from Morocco over the Straight of Gibraltar.

Since the launch of Desertec's plans, wide support has been gained for the project in Germany. But the company has so far revealed little of its concrete localisation plans. Original ideas indicated that primary solar production sites could include Algeria, Mauritania, Mali and even Libya.

But among the closest localities connected to the electricity grid is Western Sahara. GfbV now asks Minister Brüderle to make German government support for Desertec dependent on a guarantee the Moroccan-occupied territory will not be exploited.

"So far, the German federal government has been conscious not to support investments and projects in Western Sahara," the organisation wrote to Mr Brüderle. "Respecting international law and the right to self-determination of the Sahrawis means that this careful German policy towards Morocco should be continued," the letter concludes.

- Create an e-mail alert for Morocco news
- Create an e-mail alert for Western Sahara news
- Create an e-mail alert for Economy - Development news

    Printable version

On the Afrol News front page now

Rwanda succeeds including citizens in formal financial sector

afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.

Famine warning: "South Sudan is imploding"

afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
Panic in West Africa after Ebola outbreak in Guinea

afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
Ethiopia tightens its already strict anti-gay laws

afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
Ethiopia plans Africa's biggest dam

afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.

front page | news | countries | archive | currencies | news alerts login | about afrol News | contact | advertise | español 

©  afrol News. Reproducing or buying afrol News' articles.

   You can contact us at