Cooks Govt hopes to increase renewable energy for Rarotonga

RNZ reports the Cook Islands Government hopes to increase the amount of renewable energy powering Rarotonga from 15 percent to 50 percent soon.

The Green Climate Fund, a United Nations fund to help developing countries adapt to climate change, has granted the Cook Islands US$12 million to expand the main island's energy grid.

The announcement is the first of a series of projects, which will be led by the Asia Development Bank, to expand renewable energy around the Pacific.

The Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister's office, Elizabeth Wright-Koteka, said the current grid cannot handle the current uptake of renewable energy, and the expansion will help solve that.

"We've had a very positive uptake in renewable energy from the private sector and from homes, and it's gotten to a point where we've actually taken on so much renewable energy into our grid that we've had to stop taking on additional renewables," she said.

Elizabeth Wright-Koteka said with the northern islands now powered by solar, and the southern islands soon to be the same, most of the country will soon be powered by renewables

Photo: RNZI/Sally Round