by Daniel J. Graeber
Washington DC (UPI) Jun 24, 2017
A handful of the smaller Pacific island nations have access to up to $200 million to help finance renewable energy projects, the Asian Development Bank said.
"ADB is rapidly expanding our financing for renewable energy in the Pacific and have a strong portfolio of 13 renewable energy projects in nine of the targeted 11 small Pacific economies over the next three years," Anthony Maxwell, the principal regional specialist for the bank, said in a statement Friday.
The Marshall Islands, located in the northern Pacific Ocean, has a population of about 68,000 spread over 34 low-lying coral atolls, comprising 1,156 individual islands and islets. The average height of the islands is about 6 feet above sea level.
Already, it is experiencing the effects of climate change, mostly from rising sea levels which have caused flooding and inundation of crop. Government officials said that if climate change continues as it is now, there could be 2 million people from the Pacific region who will become refugees.
A 2013 study from the bank found the Pacific region could experience economic losses of as much as 12.7 percent of annual gross domestic product by 2100 as a result of climate change. At the time, the bank warned that most countries in the region could see average annual temperatures rise by 3.24 degrees Fahrenheit by 2050.
A $200 million lending facility from the bank will help regional economies shift from diesel-based power systems to renewable energy solutions.
"The facility was developed to respond to the growing demand from the region and will provide innovative financing mechanisms and upscale support for the countries' sector reform programs," Maxwell said.
The ADB's current portfolio of energy sector projects in the region is valued at around $350 million, making it the largest investor in renewable energy in the Pacific region.
Helsinki, Finland (SPX) Jun 22, 2017
According to researchers at Aalto University, by using suitable systems, more than 80% of heating energy for Finnish households could be produced using solar energy. As the price of heating energy obtained from solar heating systems needed to be competitive with the currently used heating alternatives, calculations made by researchers showed that renewable energy could be used to cover 53-81% of ... read more
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