Stakeholders’ buy-in critical to the region’s sustainable energy development

Friday, 15 December 2017 16:21

15th December 2017 Lami, Fiji – The Pacific Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (PCREEE) is committed to support island member countries of the Pacific Community (SPC) to improve access to modern, affordable and reliable energy services and energy security by promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency investments, markets and industries and to act as facilitator for innovative partnerships with the private sector.

Representatives from ten Pacific Island countries, development partners, universities and private sector met in Lami during Second PCREEE Steering Committee Meeting, providing inputs to the PCREEE Business Plan 2018–2021 and committed to support PCREEE in implementing the plan in the PICTs.

In his welcome remarks, SPC Director of Geoscience, Energy and Maritime Division, Dr Andrew Jones recalled that in April 2017, Pacific Energy Ministers met and adopted a vision for the Pacific to be 100% on renewable energy and launched the Pacific Centre of Excellence for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (PCREEE) as a vehicle for accelerating the progress towards their vision by empowering the private sector and the business community.

“PCREEE strengthens capacities of local key institutions and stakeholder groups through the up-scaling and replication of certified training and applied research programs and mechanisms,” Andrew said.

Austria Ambassador to Australia, Dr Bernhard Zimburg in his remarks highlighted that the centre is an important contribution to accelerate the shift from fossil fuel dependency to renewable energy and energy efficiency.

“Regional cooperation in sustainable energy plays a crucial role in mitigating existing barriers for sustainable energy markets, investments and industries, and in strengthening local capacities.” Bernhard said.

PCREEE is co-hosted by SPC and the Tonga Government at Nuku’alofa, and is a collaboration between SPC, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, SIDS Dock, the Government of Tonga and the Government of Austria as well as members of the Council of Regional Organisations in the Pacific (Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, Pacific Power Association, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme and the University of the South Pacific).

This week, SPC also convened the Eighth Meeting of the Pacific Energy Advisory Group (PEAG). The PEAG meeting is convened annually by SPC to take stock of energy activities in the region, discuss, steer and ensure that these are aligned to the vision of the Framework for Action on Energy Security in the Pacific – i.e. an energy secure Pacific.

The PEAG meeting also provided the opportunity for development partners, participating PICTs, private sector and regional organisations to provide updates on their respective energy development initiatives.

The high-level meeting covered the progress and plans from the 2017 Pacific Regional Energy and Transport Ministers’ Meeting Communique’, presented on specific regional and national initiatives and the new institutional structure for the Georesources and Energy Programme.

Noting Pacific’s petroleum industry is roughly to the value of USD 6 billion annually, the PEAG meeting emphasised to work closely with PICTs’ power utilities and fuel pricing regulators to access a more cost effective market data source for verifying petroleum pricing calculations and submissions.

Financing for the week long events are made possible by the Government of the United States of America, Government of Austria and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization through the PCREEE, International Union for Conservation of Nature, Government of Japan, International Renewable Energy Agency and the private sector. Logistic arrangements were coordinated by SPC and the Asian Institute of Technology (Regional Resource Centre for Asia and the Pacific).


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