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Venezuelan Scientists Shared Experiences on Clean Energy

In Boston and Washington DC

Venezuelan scientists had a busy schedule in the cities of Boston and Washington DC this week, participating in a series of conferences and meetings aimed at sharing experiences regarding the development and use of clean energy.

Two Venezuelan representatives participated in an event called “Clean Energy Week” organized by the State of Massachusetts: Dr. Leopoldo Naranjo, Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies (IDEA), a foundation devoted to scientific research, technological and social development in Venezuela, and Dr. Benito Diaz, Deputy Chief Technology Park East, an organization dedicated to business and innovation projects.

At the event, the delegates met with various officials in the area of energy and environment, as well as scientists, NGOs and private companies. They gave presentations on the policies and achievements of Venezuela regarding the rational use of energy, the growth of alternative energy and environmental improvements in the use of fossil fuels. Another issue discussed was the transfer of technology in small-scale hybrid power generation systems, and the possibility of establishing cooperation agreements to create graduate programs in the areas of environmental sustainability and alternative energy.

Delegates also learned about the Green Communities Program of Massachusetts and advances in environmental legislation in that state, which leads the U.S. in energy conservation and efficiency. The Venezuelan scientists took the opportunity to visit various institutions that use solar, wind or water power, including an astronomical observatory, educational institutions, a water treatment plant and the world’s largest wind turbine-testing laboratory testing.

Subsequently, Dr. Naranjo went to Washington where he gave a presentation at the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) to raise awareness about the renewable energy and energy efficiency projects being implemented by the Venezuelan government.
During this presentation, Naranjo described the “Energy Revolution Mission,” an energy efficiency program that has replaced more than 100 million incandescent bulbs with new, more efficient bulbs that can save 2,000 megawatts per day or 5 billion kilowatts each year.

In addition, Naranjo explained the development of a program to implement wind power production will increase in megawatts in the country. "There are plans to build a wind farm in Paraguaná, where a large amount of wind exists and which will produce 100 megawatts," he said.

Similarly, he mentioned the “Sowing Light” program, based on "the implementation of wind, solar and water power, especially in rural, indigenous and border areas, benefiting a population of 375,000 inhabitants and more than 1,200 communities" .

According to Naranjo, Venezuela’s energy and environmental policies are established in the 2007-2013 Simón Bolívar National Plan, a development plan which includes the following strategic actions: universal health care; environmental protection; the promotion of sovereignty in the areas of food, pharmaceuticals, energy and socio-productive industry; promotion of the use of alternative energy sources based on renewable resources; the promotion of “green” energy; and investment in technological development related to hydrocarbons and electricity to achieve sustainability.

Additionally, Naranjo highlighted the reinvestment of oil revenues in social programs that have a positive impact on the population. “Oil in our country is also used to develop social missions and offer the highest amount of happiness possible,” he said. From 2001 to 2008, the state-run oil company Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) contributed $53.2 billion to social programs including the different social missions.

The participation of delegates in the various events was coordinated by Venezuela’s Ministry of Foreign Relations and its Vice Ministry for North American Affairs, the Embassy to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the U.S. and the Venezuelan Consulate in Boston.

Press - Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the U.S. / November 9, 2011

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