Qatar is awash in sun, and in fact, for every square kilometer dedicated to generating solar energy, the country could conserve 1.5 million barrels of crude petroleum annually. Considering that air pollution in Qatar is worsening--six times over acceptable health limits, in fact--the country’s leadership has got to think about its citizens’ health while finding ways to reduce energy consumption at home so more can be exported abroad.

A US$1 billion polysilicon manufacturing plant is already underway, and now a study funded by Qatar Petroleum states that Qatar’s potential to generate clean energy via solar thermal technology is “huge.” At 1,858 kWh per square meter thanks to the 9.5 hours of direct sunlight daily and low cloud cover year round, Qatar is in a position where it could really transform the relationship the region has with energy. 

The prospects in Qatar are certain exciting; I have long said that Qatar is a compelling 21st century sustainability laboratory. Now it is time to stop talking, and start investing.

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.