Last November and December 2007, the King of Jordan and Jordanian officials met and spoke several days with their European Union counterparts about creating solar and other alternative energy sources in a partnership in coming years in the Jordanian deserts, with the goal of making both Jordan and Europe less dependent on traditional sources of energy in this 21st Century.
In both German DeutscheWelle news and on BBC, in both November and December there were many lengthy reports on how the Hashemite Kingdom was looking to create a partnership with Europe prior to the Global Warming Conference in Bali.
Suddenly, in the months after the conference in Global Warming conference in Bali, hardly any new sources in Europe have mentioned again the offer from Jordan to produce in partnership with Europe large quantities of solar power in the Middle East and sell a great part of it back to Europe.
Most disappointingly, the United States has ALSO not been at the forefront once again IN promoting non-petroleum and/or non-nuclear based energy development in the Middle East.
Due to the ongoing problem of disposing of nuclear waste, even energy poor states like Jordan and Egypt do not prefer nuclear energy development over alternatives. That is, cleaner solar, wind, and other non-petroleum sources of energy are more attractive in their own nation’s development than are alliances based on petroleum and nuclear technology transfers?
In contrast to the EU’s (and USA’s) lack of commitment to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Italy has indeed shown greater interest in developing solar energy projects in the deserts of Libya. However, it is not clear why Jordan has been so slighted—is it simply due to the EU’s fear of investing in a country neighboring Iraq and Israel?
Interestingly, recently as part of the global privatization process, Jordan has sold off a majority of its stake in its energy supply chain to a Dubai-based (UAE and Jordanian) business consortium.