Sustainable Renewable Energy Efficiency Project in Palau

Mar 23, 2017

The new Kayangel Island Solar-PV water pumping and supply system, has replaced the electric motor driven pumps of the Kayangel well water systems helping to enable all residents to have water. Photo: S.Abraham/2017.

Renewable energy is at the source of helping to ensure the community of over 180 residents on Kayangel Island in Palau has access to water.

Kayangel is the northernmost state of Palau located about 53 miles north of Koror, which is country’s capital city. Due to the limited natural resources and difficulty in accessing the island, the community faces the challenge of having access to the basic necessities of life.

The new Kayangel Island Solar-PV water pumping and supply system, has replaced the electric motor driven pumps of the Kayangel well water systems helping to enable all residents to have water.

At the commissioning ceremony of the Kayangel Solar Water pumping and supply system, Governor of Kayangel Hon. Midas Ngirachelulou spoke of the importance of this project not just for the people of Kayangel but also for Palau. He quoted from his own personal experience “I remember a time when I was a young boy going to school here in Kayangel, one of my chores was to carry water to the house everyday”. The project will not only help improve the daily lives of every household in Kayangel, but also set the stage for social and economic development

Located at the northeast of Kayangel Island, the water pump is installed 6ft under ground level and is connected to solar panels located on the roof of water pump house. The water is diverted through to a 60ft tower and stored in a 5,000 gallon water tank.

A new electric motor driven pump has also been installed but will be placed on standby to maintain reliability of water supply during bad weather, cloudy days or if there are operational issues with the solar PV power system. To ensure safe water supply, a new chlorinator unit has also been installed.

The Sustaining Renewable Energy Efficiency Measures (SREEM) project in Palau contributes to the goal of the Pacific Islands Greenhouse Gas Abatement Project (PIGGAREP) which is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through helping Pacific islands through the use of renewable energy technologies, such as the new Solar-PV powered water pump and supply system.

The SPREP Director General, Mr. Leota Kosi Latu delivered the keynote speech and project overview on behalf of SPREP and UNDP. He highlighted the efforts of Pacific Islands Countries in achieving sustainable development goals, which included access to drinkable water and access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all. While acknowledging the challenges during the implementation of the project, Mr. Latu noted that these were overcome through the partnership and support from Government of Palau, the contractor and the people of Kayangel. He reiterated what the what the President of Palau said in his meeting with him, that a key priority for Palau is to address the challenge of access and quality of water and its link to renewable energy for communities in Palau. 

SPREP and UNDP are pleased to be able to jointly support Palau in achieving this priority that will help improve the livelihoods of the community in Kayangel Island, which is vital for their sustainable development. 

UNDP Samoa Multi-Country Office, commended the Government of Palau for its efforts in decreasing greenhouse gas emissions as well as its contribution to supporting the Sustainable Development Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.

The project has been made possible through the PIGGAREP Plus regional project implemented by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Multi-country office in Samoa and executed by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). PIGGAREP Plus is an extension of the PIGGAREP GEF project. It is funded from the SIDS DOCK Support Program, which is a joint initiative of the UNDP and the World Bank (WB), and in close consultation with the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) and funded by the Government of Denmark. 

 

Contact information

Leota Kosi Latu, Director General of SPREP, Tel:+685 21929 Ext 202; email: kosil@sprep.org

Yvette Kerslake, UNDP MCO Samoa Programme Manager, Tel: +685 23670 Ext 45; email: yvette.kerslake@undp.org

Ioane Iosefo, UNDP MCO Samoa Programme Associate, Tel: +685 23670 Ext 20; email: ioane.iosefo@undp.org