THE Asian Development Bank (ADB) is providing a $US2 million ($F4m) grant to help reduce the Marshall Islands' consumption of fossil fuels and increase renewable electricity generation in the country.
The grant, provided by ADB's Special Funds, was signed yesterday by the President of the Marshall Islands Hilda Heine and Michael Trainor, Energy Specialist at ADB's Pacific Department, at a ceremony in Majuro.
The Majuro Power Network Strengthening Project will be financed by an ADB-supported Pacific Renewable Energy Investment Facility approved in June.
The facility is funding a series of renewable energy projects and sector reform in the smallest 11 Pacific Island countries consisting of the Cook Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.
The target countries face similar development challenges including small populations, limited resources, remoteness, and vulnerability to natural disasters.
ADB's president approved the Majuro Power Network Strengthening Project on 27 November.
"The project will support the country's renewable energy goal of achieving 20 per cent renewable electricity generation by 2020," said Mr Trainor.
"ADB will help install an advanced metering infrastructure to allow the Marshall Islands Energy Company to identify and reduce losses on the Majuro power system, improve revenue collection, and plan for the installation of distributed renewable energy generation on the Majuro power system."
The Marshalls Energy Company, the project's beneficiary, is a state-owned electricity utility which generates, distributes, and retails electricity in the capital Majuro, which has 28,000 residents or roughly half of the Marshall Islands' entire population.
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