Masdar and Tonga sign MOU to build photovoltaic solar power plant

The UAE will set up two renewable energy projects in Tonga and Afghanistan and will partner with the Development Bank of Japan to invest in solar power and wind energy projects elsewhere.

The UAE will set up two renewable energy projects in Tonga and Afghanistan and will partner with the Development Bank of Japan to invest in solar energy and wind power projects elsewhere.

These initiatives are part of the UAE’s commitments in support of the “International Year of Sustainable Energy for All’, an initiative launched by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the World Future Energy Summit (WFES) on Monday.

“A grid-connected Photovoltaics (PV) plant in the island of Vava’u in Tonga will supply 13 per cent of the island’s power demand, saving 180,000 litres of diesel annually and keeping away 400 tonnes of carbon dioxide emission,” said Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Chief Executive Officer of Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar), while making an announcement to support the initiative announced by the UN Secretary-General.

In Afghanistan, Al Jaber said a project will be built to provide eight isolated villages with Solar Home System with appliances. The project will benefit 600 households.

Under the initiative, Masdar will also have an equal share partnership with the Development Bank of Japan with investments focused on solar and wind projects.

Masdar’s Chief Executive said that his company will be investigating further opportunities for commitments to this important initiative over the next year.

The UAE stands ready to support the International Year of Sustainability for All and commits to helping it succeed, he said.

Announcing the UAE support, Dr Sultan Al Jaber said the world is recognising that renewable energy and sustainable development can offer a bridge between long-term economic strength, energy security and environmental stability.

He said access to viable clean technologies and renewable energy was critical to diversifying the energy mix and securing a better future for everyone. “And ensuring a cleaner, sustainable future is a challenge we must all face together,” Al Jaber said.

The leadership of the UAE, Abu Dhabi and Masdar are committed and doing its part to accelerate the development and deployment of renewable energy, he said.

“Energy efficiency, access and renewable energy are at the core of what we do at Masdar and, as such, we believe Masdar can greatly contribute to this.”

Al Jaber said Abu Dhabi is “ready to act and make new commitments embracing the Sustainable Energy for All Principles.”

The initiative, announced by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, will help realise universal access to energy, improved efficiency and enhanced deployment of renewable energy sources by mobilising multi-sectoral support, with a special focus on encouraging the private sector to innovate and invest. Chief Executive of Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company thanked the UN chief for announcing the initiative in Abu Dhabi.