Pacific Island Hunting for Renewables

The Papua New Guinea province of West New Britain hopes to save Kina 200,000 (US$ 53,000) in annual fuel expenses by using renewable energy in rural centres.

WEST NEW BRITAIN, Papua-New Guinea, PG, 2002-01-18 [] The province’s governor, Clement Nakmai, wants to use solar, water and wind for rural electricity needs in the future. He has started the first phase of his plan by presenting $30,800 to Rural Development Services, a consultant engaged by the provincial government to work in consultation with the Development Authority to conduct feasibility studies into the rural electrification program. Nakmai says studies will be completed in all parts of the province to determine the best source of energy to generate electricity. Rural Development Services says village residents should enjoy the same power enjoyed by urban centres, with electricity for television, water and sanitation services. Hydro turbines are manufactured in PNG, and many small projects use them. The program in West New Britain was a combination of wind and solar power built into a hybrid system. In Kandrian district, the first windfarm in PNG has been installed with six turbines to generate power for the hospital, post office, police station and the official administration. When completed, it will provide power to the entire township. Nakmai says the Waisisi project uses hydro turbines and will supply electricity to 6,000 people, with capacity for expansion. Work will begin soon to install hydro turbines in the Wasilau area.
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