First Pacific Centre for Renewable Energy opens in Tonga

The first Pacific Centre of Excellence for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency was opened in Nuku’alofa Wednesday 26.

Tongan Deputy Prime Minister said Tonga is happy to become the selected site for the regional office.

He said the centre supports Pacific Island countries in their respective priorities and commitments to achieve sustainable renewable energy.

The centre has been established with support from the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), SIDS DOCK and the Government of Austria.

According to Martin Ledolter, Managing Director of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), “the centre is an important contribution to accelerate the shift from fossil fuel dependency to renewable energy and energy efficiency.”

Tonga was selected as the site for PCREEE in recognition of the kingdomʻs strong commitment in promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Pacific Community Director General Dr. Colin Tukuitonga said that there was still a long way to go as the Pacific island countries were one of the most fossil-fuel dependent regions in the world.

“Every year, we import about 800 million to 1 billion USD worth of fuel.  Most of this fuel is used in transportation and in power generation,” he said.

The opening of the office coincides with the regional energy and transport ministers’ meeting currently being held in Tonga.

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