Light at the End of the Panel: The Gaza Strip and the Interplay Between Geopolitical Conflict and Renewable Energy Transition

Itay Fischhendler, Lior Herman*, Lioz David

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Renewable energy transition is one of the keys to mitigating climate change. While attention has been given to various economic, institutional, technological, and sociocultural barriers to this transition, it is unclear how acute interstate conflict shadowed by geopolitical forces shapes the deployment of renewables. The literature is split between those who speculate that conflict conditions discourage renewable energy proliferation and their critics. This ambiguity is surprising, since renewable energy is often suggested as a panacea for many conflict and post-conflict areas with dysfunctional centralised electricity systems. A systematic assessment of these competing hypotheses is challenging because of the absence of reliable data in fragile states and areas. This study is the first to use remote sensing to examine the temporal and spatial diffusion of renewables in the Gaza Strip against the backdrop of conflict conditions with Israel. It finds that Gaza has become a renewable energy leader despite conflict conditions exacerbated by deep poverty. The balance between discouraging and encouraging factors rests on different variables: the impact of the conflict on the free movement of labour, goods, and fuel, the intensity of the conflict, the role of economies of scale, opportunity costs, and alternative energy production costs.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalNew Political Economy
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Keywords

  • Gaza Strip
  • Renewable energy
  • conflict
  • energy transition
  • remote sensing

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