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Tonga to reach 18% of renewable energy target by July

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 29/05/2019

CEO of Tonga Power Limited estimates that Tonga will reach 18% of renewable energy by July.

Setitaia Chen says, with more renewable energy projects in Tonga it will help decrease the electricity tariff although it’s just a small contribution with about 2 percent.

“This is really in a fact holding the tariff because the demand is increasing. The cost of diesel is increasing as well so in order for us to keep our lights on 24/7, the renewable energy we got will only work for example, the wind – the power generated from the wind will only be generated when there’s wind. For sun, it’s only during an 8-hour day period when the sun is up so a lot of the projects that we’ve put in place right now though we do not see a significant impact on the tariff between 18-20 percent renewable penetration. Once we hit the 50 percent, this is when we’ll see start seeing its impact coming through and pass down to the people. Once we commission the wind farm in July, this will help at around say about 2 percent at most but really what it is helping the company hold the tariff as it stands even though the increase in demand is rising and also the cost in diesel is rising.”

He also highlighted some of the projects that are currently underway in Tonga – that will contribute to Tonga’s target to reach 50% of renewable energy by the year 2020.

Tonga Power Limited continues working on the Nuku’alofa Network Upgrade Project as well as other projects in the outer regions with assistance from the Asian Development Bank – ADB.

This includes ensuring safety during the Annual conference of the Free Church of Tonga currently held in Vava’u.

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