$600M Pledged For Renewables In Pacific Region

The Pacific Energy Summit wrapped up on Tuesday, with Australia and other countries committing to ploughing hundreds of millions of dollars into renewable energy projects in the region.
The  Pacific Energy Summit is a joint initiative designed to enable Pacific countries and territories to work with development partners towards goals of implementing energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives.
This year’s Summit aimed to build on the momentum established at the Pacific Islands Forums in 2011and 2012, and at the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) conference in Malta last year.
According to Radio New Zealand, $635 million will go to forty clean energy projects, consisting of $255 million in grant funding and $380 million in concessional loans.
Major aid donors include the United Arab Emirates, the World Bank, the European Union, Australia and Japan and the funding should result in most Pacific countries generating around half their energy from renewable sources within five years.
One of the projects Australia will be contributing to is in Kiribalti. Australia will provide $3.2 million through AusAID’s the Pacific Region Infrastructure Facility for solar power to be installed in the nation’s capital of South Tarawa, where most rely on diesel generators for electricity.
Other projects include the installation of solar panels on public buildings in the Cook Islands, hydro power in Samoa, geothermal energy in Papua New Guinea, solar for Tuvalu and more solar for Tonga
Most Pacific countries and territories have a major dependence on filthy fossil fuels for electricity generation; in particular, diesel, which is very expensive. 
Pacific nations also have a special interest in seeing a global reduction of carbon emissions as many are already feeling the impacts of climate change through rising sea levels and an increase in extreme weather events. Migrations from some islands being regularly inundated have already commenced.