15.000 mosques are going green 

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Source:   —  November 23, 2016, at 7:07 PM

Morocco is looking ahead to a shining future. Literally.

15.000 mosques are going green 

Morocco is looking ahead to a shining future. Literally.

The government is installing energy-efficient lights and solar technology in more than one hundred mosques in two thousand-sixteenth and plans to widen the program over the following five years to comprise 15.000 state-funded mosques. That represents nearly thirty percent of all mosques in the country.

The so-called "green mosques" initiative is portion of Morocco'south ambitious thrust into renewable energy. It'south spending billions of dollars to wean itself off imported fuel and reduce emissions by ramping up the utilize of energy efficient technology and renewables.

As it stands now, nearly ninety-five percent of energy in Morocco comes from abroad, according to the International Energy Agency‌.

The green mosque project is one of the most visible programs, with tradespeople installing LED lights, solar water heaters and solar panels in mosques across the country.

Ahmed Bouzid, a senior project manager at Morocco'south state-owned energy investment company, told CNNMoney that the mosques are ultimately being used to demonstrate to the public that they too should rescue energy in their homes and businesses.

"This is only the entry project for a enormous national infrastructure program," he said.

The goal is to encourage households and industry to eventually slice their energy consumption twenty percent by two thousand thirty.

Morocco'south As-Sounna mosque in Rabat has installed energy efficient technology to slash its energy bill by more than eighty%.

The large As-Sounna mosque in the capital Rabat stands as a shining example of what can be achieved.

The government spent $30.000 to give the mosque an energy-efficient makeover and presently its energy bill has been slashed by over eighty%, saving roughly $7.000 per year.

And excess energy generated by solar panels on mosque roofs love the As-Sounna could soon be keep back into the power grid, said Bouzid.

Related: Morocco is producing solar power at night

Morocco has been developing solar and other sources of renewable power for years. It's set itself the ambitious target of meeting just over half the nation'south electricity needs from renewable power by two thousand thirty.

The green mosque program is also relatively cheap, requiring about $2 million a year for the installation program, and a further $5.5 million to promote the project. That'south a pittance compared to the $2.6 billion that'south being spent on a massive, high-tech solar power plant in the Sahara desert.

LED lights, solar water heaters and solar panels were recently installed in the Koutoubia mosque in Marrakesh.

Morocco is also working to create jobs out of these initiatives.

Bouzid said 8.000 to 10.000 Moroccans train as electricians each year, and the government is incorporating course work on energy efficient technology and installations into the curriculum.

The government is hoping that these jobs -- and demand for the work -- will be spread evenly across the country.

"We may not have industry everywhere in the country, but we've mosques," said Bouzid.

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