Tonga Department of Energy

The Energy Department is responsible for the country’s energy planning and development continues to work hands in hands with the Tonga Energy Road Map (TERM) under the umbrella of the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Energy, Disaster Management, Meteorology, Information and Communication (MEIDECC). Most SIDS, including Tonga has specific socio-economic and environmental characteristics that create unique challenges for achieving sustainable energy development. What is meant by sustainable energy development is a complex and occasionally controversial area. The World Energy Council has developed a widely used framework of sustainable energy objectives in 2007 based on the accessibility, availability and acceptability of delivered energy services.

In Tonga, accessibility to energy services is hampered by its relatively small energy industry that must serve multiple islands, and hence the diseconomies of scale inherent with energy provision in remote locations to small communities. The continued availability to secure and reliable energy services in the country is also challenging given the industry’s small size, dispersed nature, and reliance on largely imported technologies as well as fuels delivered through long and easily interrupted supply chains. The acceptability of energy services is not only challenged by the present lack of environmentally sound technologies but also, importantly, by issues of  social acceptance, particularly with regard to safety, electricity bills and  the type of services required for cultural and income generation activities.