[Yap State News Brief] Progress Achieved And Plans Laid: The Half-Way Point For North-REP Activities In The Federated States Of Micronesia

Resource: Yap State News Brief/ March 22, 2013

(Secretariat of the Pacific Community Release) Suva, Fiji –  The North Pacific ACP Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Project (North-REP) continues to make progress at the beginning of the second half of the implementation timeframe across the four states of Yap, Chuuk, Kosrae and Pohnpei. Negotiations are being finalized, agreements reached, transportation of equipment arranged, lighting kits installed and plans are afoot for a grid stability study and the launch an educational campaign.


In Yap, negotiations for the installation contract of mini grids in Ulithi Falalop, Ulithi Mogmog, Fais, Woleai Falalop and Satawal, have been completed, and initial work on building battery houses is moving forward.


In Chuuk, installation contracts are being finalized for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for Sapore Elementary, Fanapanges Elementary, Uman Sapota Elementary, Central Wonip Elementary, Munien Elementary, Kukku Elementary, Lekinioch Elementary, Oneop Elementary, Southern Namoneas High School, and Lekinioch Junior High School  and 3500 solar lanterns for the families on these islands.


The schools will be used as recharging stations, along with dispensaries on Kukku, Lekinioch, and Sapore. With support from the FSM Department of Transportation, Communication and Infrastructure and Yap State, shipping of this equipment and transportation of installation crews to the outer islands has been provided by national and state vessels, thus substantially reducing costs by USD 0.5 million. Through these agreements, the FSM government and Yap State have made good their commitment and contribution to the development of livelihoods in the outer islands.


Progress in Chuuk State has seen a land lease signed for the installation of a wind monitoring system on Tonowas Island. Another lease is expected to be signed, placing a similar system in Penia village on Weno Island. These systems will operate for the next 12 to 18 months to gather sufficient data for a preliminary evaluation of the potential of wind as a resource for electricity generation.


To Kosrae now, and Walung village – the only village not connected to the Kosrae Utility Authority (KUA) power grid – has seen progress in the installation of 50 solar lighting kits following an agreement between KUA and the residents of Walung was reached. Residents are now more comfortable about signing up for the solar systems, as it is clear that KUA will provide maintenance and replacement of parts for these kits for a small fee. Residents will pay a simple fee structure of USD 5 a month for a two-light system, USD 7.50 a month for a three-light system, or USD 10 a month for four lights and free maintenance in case of any equipment failure. This will ensure the sustainability of these solar systems in the long term, or until the power grid reaches these households.


In order to ensure beneficial contributions from additional solar PV systems in Kosrae, a grid stability study has been planned for May 2013. This exercise was begun in Palau through a partnership with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Pacific Power Association (PPA). A similar study will be conducted in Kosrae, supported by North-REP, using the same methodology developed for Palau. A technical workshop to introduce the methodology will be held from 8 to10 April in Palau, and one person from each of the four FSM state power utilities will attend, supported by North-REP.


In Pohnpei, in early March, interested people analyzed the work involved in the refurbishment of the Nanpil Hydro plant to prepare their bids for submission in mid-April. The first round of tenders was too expensive – beyond the budget – so a second round was called. The refurbishment of the Nanpil Hydro plant will feed 650 kW of renewable energy into the Pohnpei Utilities Corporation power grid.


All these activities will be supported by an extensive educational campaign, which will have materials disseminated with utility power bills, along with cash power tickets, to elementary and secondary schools and various businesses throughout FSM. The aim of the campaign is to increase the general public’s knowledge about how to conserve energy, utilise energy efficient appliances and produce energy from local renewable energy resources. The materials will be provided in English and in local languages. Public seminars in Pohnpei have been planned to support this campaign.


For more information, contact Avnita Goundar, Policy and Research Adviser, EDD, SPC, Suva, Fiji (Tel.: +679 3379 281; email:AvnitaG@spc.int) or visit the North-REP website: www.spc.int/northrep  or add us on Facebook as NorthREP.



Resource: Yap State News Brief/ March 22, 2013


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