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Showcase of Solar Projects in 11 Pacific Nations


6 December 2018, Poland: Pacific island countries are at the forefront of global climate change efforts and in the years and decades to come things will get much worse for them as there is irrefutable scientific evidence in the recent IPCC Report on 1.5 degrees that we must take action now if we are to avoid the worst impact of climate change.

To showcase solar projects in the Pacific, a side event was held at the Pacific and Koronivia Pavilion at COP24 in partnership with the Solar Head of State (SHOS), to provide more insight on how the installation of solar energy infrastructure to power residences of Heads of State of eleven Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) member countries and the PIDF Headquarters, is promoting renewable energy in the Pacific. SHOS is a non-profit organisation that focuses on the installation of solar energy infrastructure to power prominent government buildings and promote renewable energy. In doing so, each country’s leadership is given first-hand experience with the proven benefits of sustainable technologies.

Speaking about the project, the PIDF Secretary General François Martel thanked the India-UN Development Partnership Fund operated by the United Nations Office of South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) for their generous financial support of USD 1.1 million which is a demonstration of how important and effective South-South Cooperation is becoming in today’s world.

During the side event participants were told that each system installed would become a demonstration project to inspire local adoption of solar energy and other renewable energy technologies through national leadership.

“The projects will be used as a way of engaging the general public on the benefits of renewable energy through an effective media campaign and community outreach and demonstrate the moral leadership of the Pacific Islands on climate change”, said Secretary General Martel.

Participants were informed that the initiative will start implementation in Palau, Tonga, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Kiribati and Fiji. Through this project, a MoU was also signed between PIDF and SHOS for the PIDF headquarters as it will also be solarised supporting PIDF’s aim to become a carbon-neutral organization by 2020 in line with its mission to enable green growth in the Pacific Islands.

The side event, moderated by the Director of SHOS, Mr. James Ellsmoor, featured a panel which consisted of Mr. Rajesh Gawande, Deputy Secretary, UN Division of the Ministry of External Affairs of India and Mr. Shishir Seth from the International Solar Alliance (ISA) who highlighted the commitment by the Indian government towards providing aid and technical assistance for solar projects in the Pacific region. They informed the participants at the event that India stands ready to support the transition to renewable energy in PIDF member countries.

The panel also consisted of Mr. Xiaohua Zhang from UNOSSC who also acknowledged India’s support and zeal for supporting solar and renewable energy projects across the Pacific.

PIDF has a MoU with UNOSSC as the Pacific platform for promoting and coordinating south-south cooperation activities in the Pacific. An experience sharing address from Ms Cherry-Fevrier from the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) was also delivered at the side event to showcase how the Caribbean islands are transitioning to solar and renewable energy.

SHOS and the OECS have recently agreed on a partnership to promote the concept of solarisation in the Eastern Caribbean States.

For more information you can access the side event video stream at: https://vimeo.com/304774964

 #COP23 #COP24 #ResilientPacific #Talanoa4Ambition #Koronivia #ClimateAction

The Pacific and Koronivia Pavilion is open from 2 to 14 December at COP24 in Katowice, Poland. It is a Pacific partnership between the COP23 Presidency of the Republic of Fiji, with support from the New Zealand Government and CROP Plus regional agencies.

The Pavilion will be jointly managed by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the agencies of the Council of Regional Organisations of the Pacific, namely the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) through the Office of the Pacific Ocean Commissioner, the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF).

Download the Attendify App onto your smart phone and join ‘Pacific & Koronivia Pavilion’ event to access additional information including the latest update of the Side Events programme. Or visit the COP23 website to download the programme and learn more about the Pavilion.

For more information please contact the Pavilion Manager Ms Audrey Brown-Pereira (audreyp@sprep.org