Comet-ME is an Israeli-Palestinian organization providing basic energy and clean-water services to off-grid communities using environmentally and socially sustainable methods. We facilitate the social and economic empowerment of some of the poorest and most marginalized communities in the occupied Palestinian territories through the installation of renewable-energy and clean-water systems, along with the provision of reliable maintenance, monitoring, and management.
Our work has developed out of a long-standing relationship and commitment to the marginalized Palestinian communities in Area C—from our base in the south Hebron hills, throughout the southern West Bank, and into the Jerusalem-Jericho corridor, the central West Bank, and the Jordan Valley. Initially a volunteer initiative, Comet-ME conducted its first installations in 2006 and formally incorporated as a public benefit company in Israel in September 2009. Today, we are a vertically integrated utility, providing basic energy services to 125 communities and 1,900 households, encompassing nearly 10,000 people. In 2013 we entered the field of off-grid water pumping and filtration solutions, and since then have brought our clean-water services to more than 400 households throughout our energy install base.
Since the establishment of our Center for Appropriate Technologies in the south Hebron hills in 2012, Comet-ME has been a daily presence in the lives of the beneficiary communities, responding to any issue—technical or social— that arises, and in this way establishing ourselves as a reliable and trustworthy service provider in the region.
Comet-ME is currently the leading provider of sustainable rural electrification services in the region and an innovator in the field of off-grid water technologies. Over a decade of experience in the field, we have seen how the provision of basic energy and water services to the marginalized communities in Area C has proven to be an effective means for community empowerment and economic development, helping communities remain and live in dignity on their lands.
Co-founders Elad Orian and Noam Dotan
“Comet started when Noam and myself sat next to each other on a bus on our way back from a tour of Hebron. We spoke about the degrees of freedom of the political system in which we live. In physics, degrees of freedom are the possible states in which a system can change, and we wondered — in what ways can this system change?
In many ways, this is what Comet is about – expanding degrees of freedom. It allows people who did not have access to clean water to drink their water without getting sick. It allows kids to turn on the lights so they can do their homework. It allows communities to develop and have a future, not just a present and a past.
It allows all of us to go beyond the divisions that are all around us, between Palestinians and Israelis, between Muslims and Christians and Jews, and work as a team together. I think Comet’s greatest achievement is expanding the freedom of the people it touches, both the communities it works with and our team. By doing what we do, in the way we do it, we expand our degrees of freedom, always in a meaningful, long-term, and empowering way.”
–Co-founder and general manager Elad Orian at Comet-ME’s 10th anniversary celebration, September 28, 2019
The Comet-ME Team
Board of Directors
Prof. Dan Rabinowitz
Dr. Danielle Shani
Dr. Michal Givoni
Dr. Yoav Lehahn
Elad Orian – co-founder, general manager
Noam Dotan – co-founder, technical director
Asmahan Simry – deputy manager
Waseem al-Ja’bari – operations manager
Dahham Abu Aram – maintenance manager
Nidal Safarini – water project manager
Arafat Arafat – internet project manager
Musab Shrouf – energy installations manager
Moatasem Hathaleen – water installations manager
Khalil Shehadah Abu Sabha – electricity technician
Ali Hamamdeh – electricity technician
Ibrahim Makhamreh – electricity technician
Jalal Mhalys – electricity technician
Ahmad Najadeh – electricity technician
Mahmoud Sweedat – electricity technician
Amir Sa’aydeh – electricity technician
Ma’moun A’jweh – water installation technician
Hammam al-Joundi – water installation technician
Sujood Abusabha – water specialist
Anas Ghannam – internet technician
Ibrahim Awlad Muhammad – internet technician
Ryan Brand – design engineer
Tamar Cohen – organizational development officer
Leqa Daghameen – database programmer, digital workshop facilitator
Basheer Abu Baker, CPA – financial manager