16 Nov 2009

Tonga looks at how to end dependence on diesel power

8:10 pm on 16 November 2009

A meeting on how Tonga can rein in its energy costs is underway in Vava'u, with the country planning to generate half its electricity by renewable means within 3 years.

It involves 31 representatives from Tonga's major development partners, including New Zealand, Australia, the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank.

The Tonga delegation is headed by Prime Minister Dr Feleti Sevele and the Minister for Lands, Survey and Natural Resources, Lord Tuita.

Presently nearly 100 percent of the electricity generation in Tonga is fueled by imported diesel.

The Government's goal is to reduce Tonga's vulnerability to future oil price shocks and to reduce the cost of electricity to the people, while increasing access in an environmentally sustainable manner.