ADB to support new solar projects in Tuvalu

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $6 million grant to the Government of Tuvalu to help fund expanded access to modern energy services and reduce the country’s heavy reliance on fossil fuels for power generation. The grant will fund the installation of rooftop photovoltaic and battery energy storage systems in Funafuti as well as the implementation of climate resilient, ground-mounted, solar photovoltaic systems in the outer islands of Nukufetau, Nukulaelae, and Nui. The systems will allow short, regular periods of energy being generated only from renewable sources, which is a positive step towards the country’s target of 100 percent renewable energy penetration.
The project will also strengthen the institutional capacity of Tuvalu Electricity Corporation by training staff in inclusive renewable energy project development and implementation. When the project is complete, 35 percent of the electricity delivered to the people of Tuvalu during daylight hours will be from clean renewable energy sources.
The increasing access to renewable energy projects will reduce diesel generation and increase the renewable energy contribution from 15 percent to 32 percent in Funafuti and from around 70 percent to over 90 percent in Tuvalu’s outer islands.
»The project is the first ADB-supported energy sector project in Tuvalu,« said the Director of ADB’s Pacific Energy Division Olly Norojono. It is one of a series of renewable energy projects being financed under ADB’s Pacific Renewable Energy Investment Facility, which was developed in response to the growing demand from the region for energy finance. The facility also provides innovative financing mechanisms and upscale support for sector reform in the smallest 11 Pacific island countries consisting of the Cook Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.
ADB has supported Tuvalu since 1993, committing $7.9 million in loans, $42.3 million in grants, and $8.6 million in technical assistance. ADB’s grant is sourced from the Asian Development Fund, with the Government of Tuvalu contributing $480,000 to the project.

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