Advertisement

Pacific island nations get renewable energy support

The Pacific region could see a loss of about 12 percent of the annual GDP because of the threats from climate change.

By Daniel J. Graeber
Pacific island nations get renewable energy support
Asian Development Bank offers financial hand to Pacific Island nations looking to transition quickly to a cleaner economy. File photo by Ethan Daniels/UPI.

June 23 (UPI) -- A handful of the smaller Pacific island nations have access to up to $200 million to help finance renewable energy projects, the Asian Development Bank said.

"ADB is rapidly expanding our financing for renewable energy in the Pacific and have a strong portfolio of 13 renewable energy projects in nine of the targeted 11 small Pacific economies over the next three years," Anthony Maxwell, the principal regional specialist for the bank, said in a statement Friday.

Advertisement

The Marshall Islands, located in the northern Pacific Ocean, has a population of about 68,000 spread over 34 low-lying coral atolls, comprising 1,156 individual islands and islets. The average height of the islands is about 6 feet above sea level.

Already, it is experiencing the effects of climate change, mostly from rising sea levels which have caused flooding and inundation of crop. Government officials said that if climate change continues as it is now, there could be 2 million people from the Pacific region who will become refugees.

RELATED India gets bonds to help tackle climate change

A 2013 study from the bank found the Pacific region could experience economic losses of as much as 12.7 percent of annual gross domestic product by 2100 as a result of climate change. At the time, the bank warned that most countries in the region could see average annual temperatures rise by 3.24 degrees Fahrenheit by 2050.

Advertisement

A $200 million lending facility from the bank will help regional economies shift from diesel-based power systems to renewable energy solutions.

"The facility was developed to respond to the growing demand from the region and will provide innovative financing mechanisms and upscale support for the countries' sector reform programs," Maxwell said.

RELATED Myanmar recovery linked to development of electrical grid

The ADB's current portfolio of energy sector projects in the region is valued at around $350 million, making it the largest investor in renewable energy in the Pacific region.

RELATED Former OPEC member Indonesia makes geothermal move

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement