Photo Credit: Yossi Weiss
(Standing R-L: Yom Tov Samia, GE-Israel management; IEC Chairman Yiftah Ron-Tal; US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and Energy Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz; sitting R-L: Nissim Zwili, GE-Israel management; Fabrice Kermorgant, GE senior regional manager; IEC CEO Ofer Bloch)

The Israel Electric Corporation signed a contract on Tuesday with General Electric (GE) to establish two electricity production units at the Orot Rabin site near Hadera.

Attending the ceremony were Energy Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, IEC Chairman Yiftah Ron-Tal, IEC CEO Ofer Bloch, General Electric senior regional manager Fabrice Kermorgant and General Electric Gas Power CEO Scott Strazik.

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The deal, which came as part of an effort to reform the electricity sector in Israel, involves the construction of two natural gas-powered combined cycle electricity production units at the site.

The first unit is scheduled to begin production in June 2022; the second is set to begin production about six months later.

“Signing the agreement to build gas turbines that will replace the coal-fired production units in Hadera is an important step toward weaning Israel from polluting coal and reducing air pollution throughout the country according to the timetables I have set,” said Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz.

“In recent years the State of Israel has been in first place among OECD countries in reducing the use of coal and polluting fuels and replacing them with natural gas and renewable energy. This Passover we are advancing from slavery to freedom in the field of energy, including the freedom to breathe clean air.”

Ambassador Friedman said he sees the project as another way to strengthen the longstanding relationship between Israel and the United States.

“I am pleased and encouraged by the cooperation between GE and IEC on the Orot Rabin Power Plant Modernization Project,” Friedman said. “We congratulate Israel’s continued effort to strengthen the country’s power infrastructure to meet the growing demand for electricity and to accelerate all-round growth, and welcome IEC’s selection of GE, and its technology, for such an important milestone.”

“GE is honored to work with the Israel Electricity Corporation to bring the first HA gas turbine to Israel and to help modernize the Orot Rabin Power Plant,” said General Electric Gas Power CEO Scott Straznik.

“By investing in state-of-the-art technology to transform its infrastructure, IEC will ensure that power is more reliably and sustainably delivered to its customers in Israel.”

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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