A Solomon Islands delegation led by the Hon. Minister for Mines, Energy and Rural Electrification Bradley Tovosia has attended the 10th session of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Assembly at Abu Dhabi from 10th to 12th January 2020.
The Assembly was held prior to Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and the World Future Energy Summit, taking place from 13 to 16 January 2020, which will also feature a number of events hosted by IRENA.
Participants of the High-Level Meeting on Accelerating the Energy Transformation in Small Island Developing States shared their vision and experiences in the adoption of renewables, identifying new actions and commitments in light of the discussions at the UN Climate Action Summit.
Representing the Government of Solomon Islands, Mr Tovosia made interventions and explained to the Assembly the position and challenges SI has with regard to the morning session on the topic discussed.
He emphasized the importance of proper planning and Financing of Renewable Energy projects in Small Island Developing States, SIDS, as paramount to each nations achieving its national determined contributions in the climate change targets.
Synergies between Renewable Adaptation and Mitigation measures, must form a collective mechanism to harness and implement the synergies in all SIDS countries.
With regard to Solomon Islands, though its National Energy Policy is still in infancy, the SI Gov’t is serious in developing and establishing relevant legislations and road maps to achieve the importance of planning and safeguarding the energy sector.
With the help from World Bank, projects on these legislations and road maps will be implemented from 2020 to 2022.
The Assembly has also been presented with a Report on High-level Meeting on the Geopolitics of the Energy Transformation.
The report of the Commission is premised on the fact that renewables have grown at an unprecedented rate and now form the leading edge of a global energy transition. The impact of this remarkable growth has mostly been felt in the electricity sector.
Since 2012, renewables have added more new power generation capacity than conventional sources of energy. Wind and solar now provide 6% of electricity generation worldwide, up from 0.2% in 2000. In the aggregate, renewables account for around a quarter of global electricity generation. A number of major economies are setting zero-carbon goals by 2050 and a target of 100% renewable power is becoming more common. New technologies implemented in the energy industry, such as smart grids, the internet of things and big data, are helping countries accelerate the shares of renewables in their energy mix and maximise these benefits.
The transition to renewable energy is not just a shift from one set of fuels to another but involves a much deeper transformation that will have major social, economic and political implications beyond the energy sector. It will also transform geopolitics as we have known it for years. The Commission’s report was a systematic effort to examine this subject in a comprehensive manner.
Solomon Islands commented on the role of Renewables as it will transform geopolitics in terms of the availability of the energy source. As a fossil-fuel importing country, Renewables will provide opportunities that will improve trade balance and lead to improve macroeconomic and welfare benefits in the SIDS countries.
One Ministerial Roundtable and two Ministerial Plenary sessions also took place, engaging Ministers and High-level participants on specific topics such as Decarbonisation – Green Hydrogen, Renewables Investment and Hydropower.
The main objectives include raising awareness of the importance of intensifying global efforts to deploy renewable energy, and to discuss their impact on the energy transformation and sustainable development, connecting policy makers, experts and innovators worldwide to learn from each other, and share best practice and experiences on issues of common interest.
The Assembly also considered the conclusions of the Agency’s Council meetings and will provide guidance on specific administrative and institutional matters.
The tenth session of the Assembly brought together Heads of State and Government, Ministers, Member delegations as well as heads of international and regional organisations, public and private entities and civil society representatives to contribute to the energy transformation dialogue.
The Solomon Islands delegation at the tenth IRENA Assembly is led by Minister Bradley Tovosia, Permanent Secretary of MMERE Dr. Christopher Vehe, Manager of Debt Management Mr. Robert Dugavalaka and Deputy Director Energy Mr. Gabriel Aimaea.