Tonga targets 70% renewable energy by 2030 with solar energy as the main driver


29th September, 2020 Tonga will continue the efforts to have renewable energy providing 70 percent of the country’s power supply needs, with solar power being an important part of that investment, the Regional Committee for the Asia and Pacific Region of the International Solar Alliance has been told.

Hon Poasi Mataele Tei, the Vice President of the Asia and Pacific Region of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) and the Minister for Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications (MEIDECC) made the revelation at the virtual meeting of the Regional Committee Meeting for Asia & Pacific Region, on Monday, September 28.

And he pointed to the important role that the ISA will play in helping members in the Asia and Pacific region strengthen their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and to chart a roadmap for achieving their climate action targets.

“In Tonga, we have taken the decision of building of renewable capacity by 70% by 2030 and solar will be a key driver for achieving our targets. The role of ISA will be crucial in helping the countries strengthen their NDCs and to chart a roadmap for achieving their climate action targets,” Hon Tei said.

“With the next round of NDCs, countries especially across Asia & Pacific are enhancing their commitments for greater deployment of renewable energy, particularly solar energy.”

He highlighted the opportunities and potential for solar energy in the region, adding the fact that the needs of the member countries are “large and diverse”.

“The needs of Asia and Pacific region are pretty large and diverse, but at the same time, the region is filled with immense opportunities and potential. Solar PV has shown tremendous growth potential across the globe, especially in the Asia-Pacific region,” he said.

The Hon Minister said the solar capacity in Asia alone is expected to rise to 1860 GW by 2030 and he added that the ISA needs to work hand in hand with Member Countries to ensure that this phenomenal rise of solar is equitable so as to facilitate climate justice for all.

He said the regional committee meetings gives Ministers, stakeholders’ reps and partners the chance to reflect back on the needs and requirements of the various regions, and the roadmap for achieving the same through ISA.

“This year has been especially special for the ISA and its Member Countries with the launch and progress of various new and innovative initiates by the ISA Secretariat,” Hon Tei said.

“The World Solar Technology Summit which witnessed a gathering of more 10,000 participants from across the globe, was a unique first in that direction.”

Other initiatives this year saw the launch of the banker’s training programme, ISA’s Coalition for Sustainable Climate Action (ISACSCA), ISA CARES, World Solar Bank and Roadmap for Mobilizing US $1 Trillion in solar sector by 2030.

The Third Assembly of the International Solar Alliance will be held on October 14, 2020 in New Delhi, Republic of India.

That meeting will discuss a wide range of issues including the adoption of reports from the various regions, election of officials for regional and the international associations and the updates of various projects and programs that have been undertaken.

Hon Tei said the initiatives taken for the scaling up the solar deployment in the Asia and Pacific region will be achieved by all members working together.

“The Kingdom of Tonga has always been an active participant in all of ISA’s activities and I urge all the other countries of the region to support ISA in its endeavors through their participation,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mr. Upendra Tripathy, Director General of the ISA, also attended the virtual meeting,a long with other stakeholders and partners.