Lebanon’s green energy market is expanding

Source: Beirut River Solar Snake (BSS) website

According to the Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation (LCEC), investments between 2011 and 2015 in renewable energy, energy efficiency and green buildings in Lebanon have reached $450 million. Their study estimates that this has provided 10,000 direct and indirect jobs in the market. The table below shows the total number of firms has drastically increased in the past 5 years.

  2011 2015
Solar Water Heating 25 >170
Green or Energy Audit 4 >30
Solar Photovoltaic 4 >30

 

The LCEC expect these investments to be worth $300 to $400 million in 2016 alone. In fact, the Lebanese Central Bank has committed $1 billion to support the productive sectors of the economy, including renewable energy loans.

This provides solid evidence that the path towards a green economy in Lebanon would be rewarding for many. In addition, it will help Lebanon fulfill its commitments under the Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) that was submitted for the 2015 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of Parties (COP21).

A green economy can also help alleviate some of the country’s longstanding problems. Lebanon’s electricity sector has been in disarray since the end of the civil war. For the last 25 years, the Lebanese government has had to transfer funds to offset Electricite du Liban’s financial deficit. These transfers have grown from $139 million to $2.2 billion a year. Lebanon’s conditional INDC target is that 20% of the country’s energy demand is supplied through renewable sources by 2030 and a 10% reduction in power demand through energy-efficiency by 2030. These targets will not only reduce the dependence on traditional sources of energy, but will also reduce the financial burden of EDL.

Investing in a green economy will not only add value to the energy sector, but it has the potential to improve other sectors in need such as solid waste management, transportation, agriculture and industry.

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