Solar Firm to Brave Iraq’s Uncertainty

In this world of green tags markets, and state incentives halving the cost of massive solar PV systems, it’s easy to forget where renewable energy technologies’ benefits really shine – in remote places with non-existent or unreliable electrical supplies. Iraq is now one of the those places.

Pennington, New Jersey – April 6, 2004 [SolarAccess.com] WorldWater Chairman and CEO Quentin T. Kelly was interviewed April 1 on the “Marketplace” business program by host David Brown about the risks and potential rewards of pursuing contracts in Iraq, particularly in light of events this past week in Falluja. The company, which specializes in solar photovoltaic water pumping solutions, had been scheduled to participate in a trade expo in Baghdad, which was indefinitely postponed Thursday following the killings and public mutilations of four American contractors in Falluja last week. The company has been actively pursuing Iraqi contracts, and a team of seven WorldWater engineers, led by Dr. Anand Rangarajan, is scheduled to depart for Baghdad for high-level meetings with U.S. contracting companies and Iraqi ministries this weekend. Those plans have not been altered by the Falluja killings, Kelly stated in the interview. Participation on the team going to Baghdad has been on a volunteer basis from the start, he said. “I spoke to each engineer individually stating that I would not ask them to go and each one said, ‘I want to go,'” Kelly said. WorldWater has proprietary solar technology and water management expertise which could be of great value in bringing water and electricity to the Iraqi people, particularly with the high-powered AquaMax solar pump, Kelly said. Also, the company has operated in areas with significant security concerns in the past, including the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebel camp in the Philippines, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Somalia. Marketplace, which is produced by Minnesota Public Radio, has the largest cumulative audience for any business program on radio or television in the country. It is syndicated out to public radio stations all across the country.
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