The Cabinet approved a long-range plan to promote the production of electricity from renewable, non-polluting sources.

 Cabinet communique

 

Reuters archive photo

(Communicated by the Cabinet Secretariat)

At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday), 17 July 2011:

1. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks:

"The State of Israel is a democracy that defends itself against attempts to delegitimize it in the international sphere. This is the reason that we passed the law against boycotts against the State of Israel and its citizens. I think that it is an important law. However, we must act systematically and prudently vis-à-vis the steps that we are taking. There is what to correct. But we must do so methodically and cautiously and in any case we must protect our system of law and the rule of law, the courts and our enforcement agencies. Therefore, we will act cautiously and in order to maintain these networks.

I think that by this restrained conduct are also preventing the continuation of the delegitimization campaign that is defaming Israel. We have been, remain and always will be the only democracy that upholds law and individual rights in the Middle East. I hope, by the way, that perhaps this will change in the future, but it certainly does not seem so in the present.

I am aware of the rent crisis. I am certainly aware of the housing crisis. The Government is doing things here to repair this blight that has vexed the State of Israel for many years. We are a small country. We have a very large demand for apartments, both for purchase and for rental, and there are not enough apartments. There are not enough apartments because we have two insane bureaucracies that prevent the planning and marketing of apartments; today, it takes more than five years to plan an apartment in Israel. We are now attacking these two things.

Tomorrow, the proposal to complete the historic reform at the Israel Land Administration will reach the Knesset so that we will be able to market apartments. I call on all those who are now demonstrating, I understand their plight, to come and help us tomorrow, myself and the Government, in the Knesset to pass this. This is the first thing.

The second thing – We have 13 days in which to pass the national housing committees, the law to bypass the planning bureaucracy, so that we may proceed quickly. Thirteen days, this means that in the next two weeks we will submit two historic laws that the State of Israel has been awaiting and hoping for because only together will it be possible to bring about a genuine start of the housing solution. I would like to say in advance that it will take between two and three years to channel tens of thousands of apartments into the market. But this is what will resolve the issue; this is what will provide a genuine solution. Whoever would like to help is invited to help us pass these two items.

The third thing, there has been much talk and much protest about the high price of dairy products, and food in general, around the country. Yes, prices are high. We will begin a discussion today which will last at least one more session on bringing about a fundamental reform in the dairy and food sectors. I announce in advance that I will be guided by three principles in these discussions. They are: Competition, competition and competition. Competition will lower consumer prices. Competition will provide the solution."

2. The Cabinet approved the appointment of Hanan Goder as Ambassador to Nepal.

3. Pursuant to Article 5 of the 2003 Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Provision), the Cabinet extended its validity by six months, until 31 January 2012. The foregoing shall be submitted for Knesset approval.

The Cabinet also decided, on the basis of the opinion of the authorized security bodies, that the Gaza Strip is still an area from which activity is being perpetrated, that is liable to endanger the security of the State of Israel and its citizens; therefore, the Government instructs the Interior Minister to continue denying permits to reside or stay in Israel to those registered as residents of the Gaza Strip, as well as to those who reside in the Strip even though they may not be registered as such.

4. The Cabinet approved the establishment of a memorial site to Jewish soldiers who fought in World War II.

5. The Cabinet approved a long-range plan to promote the production of electricity from renewable, non-polluting sources. The goal of the plan is to work to reduce the gas emissions and air pollution by the electricity industry and to ensure long-term sources of energy for Israel, while developing stable and ramified industry and encouraging innovative research. The decision was formulated on instruction from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the National Economics Council, in cooperation with the National Infrastructures and Environmental Protection ministries.
 
The decision sets a quantitative goal for electricity generation from renewable sources of 2,760 megawatts by the end of 2020, constituting 10% of electricity production in Israel. An interim goal of 1,550 megawatts by the end of 2014 was also set.
 
In the first stage, between 2011-2014, the quotas that have already been allocated for the production of electricity from renewable, non-polluting sources, as well as additional quotas, will be realized: 460 megawatts for large installations, 110 megawatts for installations designated for independent consumption, approximately 210 megawatts for electricity generation from bio-gas and waste, and 800 megawatts of electricity from wind power. In 2014, the National Infrastructures Ministry will formulate an updated policy in order to meet the goals for 2020.
 
The plan is designed to reduce surplus costs to consumers in producing electricity from these sources.
 
The Government’s goal is to promote innovative Israeli technologies in this field. An inter-ministerial team will be established to oversee the evaluation and development of Israeli technologies. The Cabinet will also allocate 50 additional megawatts to the evaluation of installations with innovative Israeli technologies. NIS 10 million will be allocated to National Infrastructures Ministry Chief Scientist for the development of model facilities to generate electricity and which incorporate innovative technologies.