A Delegation from the EU Visits An-Najah
On Thursday, March 16th, 2017, Professor Maher Natsheh, Acting President of An-Najah received at his office a delegation from the European Union.
The visit aimed at discussing the progress made on the EU funded project MED-SOLAR on implementing a photovoltaic plant on An-Najah buildings with a capacity of 145 kWp at both An-Najah National University Hospital and the Faculties of Medicine and Pharmacy building.
The university has the benefit of the PV plant with an implemented energy management system (EMS), which provides different modes of operation according to the needs of the site. This facility reduces the electricity bill cost of the hospital and the use of diesel fuel during the long hours of electricity cuts to provide better services to its patients.
At the beginning of the meeting, Prof. Natsheh welcomed the delegation and thanked the EU efforts in supporting higher education in Palestine. He briefed the guests on An-Najah’s faculties, academic programmes and achievements as the top university in Palestine according to Webometrics. He then talked about the economic and political challenges that encounter the university such as the dilemma of attracting international students and experts to teach at the university. He also stressed the importee of the project and the university aspiration to increase the number of solar cells on campus.
In turn, Dr. Imad Ibrik, Director of Energy Research Centre gave a presentation on the project’s implementation steps, objectives, motivations, outcomes and positive impact on the Palestinian community in terms of reducing environmental pollution, decreasing the energy price and diminishing poverty in areas using solar cells. He clarified that the system productivity is very high and reached 90% in the past few years. He also pointed out that An-Najah is the first entity in Palestine to implement this type of project.
Prof. Jalal Dabeek, Director of Urban Planning and Disaster Risk Reduction Centre at An-Najah and the Vice President of Palestinian National Agency for Disaster Risk Mitigation talked about An-Najah scientific centres and their role in offering services to the Palestinian community. He added that the university is working on bridging the gap between applied research and the community.
The delegation commended An-Najah’s persistent efforts in making the project a success and stressed the importance of this project for local students and experts and said that the university is paving the way for a green environmentally friendly campus.
The meeting was also attended by Dr. Mohammad El-Amleh, Vice President for Academic Affairs; Dr. Rasha Khayyat, Director of the Scholarships Office; Ms Dalal Radwan from the International Office; Mr. Khaled Mufleh, Acting Director of the Public Relations Department and Ms Shatha Jararaa from PR.
The delegation also visited An-Najah National University Hospital and the New Campus to see the locations on which the solar cells were installed.
MED SOLAR project is funded by the EU and is being executed and supervised by the ENPI-CBC. It aims at improving energy situation in the Mediterranean areas that face the same specific energy reality: the increase in the energy price and the weakness of the electrical grid (with the impossibility of increasing the power supply, etc.). The project targets the countries Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine.
Instead of using exclusively polluting and expensive fuel generators against electricity interruption, the project proposes to provide the generators with a solar photovoltaic (PV) system for energy backup.