27 May '11, 7pm

How the ‘Arab Spring’ makes massive solar in North Africa more likely

Desertec is a massive project to to build solar thermal plants in the deserts of North Africa -- you know, the same North Africa that had all the revolutions just now. But proponents are saying there’s no reason to put the project on hold just because of political unrest. In fact, they say, the economic benefits afforded by the Desertec plant might help the region in its shift towards democracy. The plants would take advantage of the Sahara’s sunshine -- it gets so much that covering only 1 percent of its area in solar thermal plants could power the entire world -- and would be able to supply one-sixth of Europe’s electricity. Exporting to Europe would spur economic development, promoting the kind of stability the region requires, energy expert Kristen Westphal told Der Spiegel . That’s led some to accuse Desertec of having a neocolonialist agenda -- Europeans using Africa...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/list/2011-05-27-how-the-arab-spring-...

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