The Premier of Niue, Hon Toke Talagi has signed with the Secretary General of the Forum Secretariat, Tuiloma Neroni Slade a financing agreement to confirm a contribution of USD 4 million to begin work on the design and installation of solar powered grid connected generators and battery backed power stabilizers for Niue.
The contribution is part of the Pacific Environment Community (PEC) Fund, a regional joint initiative between Pacific Island Forum Leaders and the Government of Japan agreed at the 2009 PALM 5 meeting held in Hokkaido Japan.
At a brief ceremony held in Alofi, Niue on 7 November, Premier Talagi welcomed the contribution and said the installation of the solar powered grid connected generators will contribute significantly towards minimizing Niue’s reliance on fossil fuels.
“This assistance will go a long way in helping Niue reach its energy goals, which includes one hundred percent reliance on renewable energy sources,” Premier Talagi said at the signing ceremony.
Forum Secretary General Slade congratulated the Premier and government of Niue for showing innovation in devising a project that will see the power generated from the solar panels directly pass through the national grid whilst a battery bank will ensure a stable and uninterrupted power supply to the grid.
Mr Slade added that it is expected the project will reduce fuel costs by approximately NZD$137,000 per year. In the long term, the cost savings accumulated will represent significant savings that can be utilised in other priority areas.
Under the PEC Fund, the Government of Japan provided ¥6.8billion ( approximately US$66 million dollars) to help Forum Island Countries to tackle climate change issues with a focus on the provision of solar power generation systems and sea water desalination plants or a combination of both.
The Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat was tasked to manage the fund in close collaboration with the Government of Japan. Each Forum Island Country is provided with an indicative allocation of USD$4 million.
To date, the Governments of Samoa, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, Nauru, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Niue, Republic of Palau and Republic of Marshall Islands have successfully accessed the PEC Fund for national renewable energy and seawater desalination projects.
For media enquiries contact Ms Mue Bentley Fisher, the Forum Secretariat’s Communications Officer on phone: 679 331 2600 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org