Suva Fiji, 13 November 2020 – The Regional Validation Workshop for the KOICA funded “Capacity Building to Strengthen Sustainable Implementation of Renewable Energy Technologies for Rural Energy Access” Project is being held from Thursday 12th and Friday 13th November 2020, at Holiday Inn, Suva.
PIDF Secretary General Ambassador Solo Mara, in delivering his Keynote Address stated, that the community receptiveness of the four project implementation countries of Fiji, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Vanuatu, captured through the training feedback sections of the Pilot Community Training Reports, illustrate just how high renewables are on the Pacific’s agenda.
The Secretary General also stated how renewables support PIDF’s commitment to support its Members in meeting their targets of zero-emissions economies in the Pacific Islands.
PIDF recognizes that engagement with the local community is a vital part of any sustainable energy project. Without strong support from people living in the local area, it is difficult for any project to be successful. This was made all the more obvious through the projects training needs assessment in early 2019, where most countries conveyed, that though sustainable projects had been initiated, these projects had not been able to continue due to insufficient community engagement and ownership.
It’s equally important to connect Government Ministries and communities in terms of project implementation. This connection allows relationships and trust to build as the project progresses. Community members must be encouraged and enabled to genuinely participate in projects if they are to be sustainable.
With the objective; to strengthen informed and inclusive decision-making by resource owners and local government officials for integration of Green Economy (GE) and Renewable Energy (RE) into Local Level Planning and to Strengthen Implementation of Renewable energy (RE) infrastructure for Rural Electrification, this Validation workshop aims to achieve that vital country specification into the training modules by incorporating community feedback into the drafts.
PIDF Program Management Team Leader, Ms. Marilyn Tagicakibau, and Coordinator Program Management, Ms. Afsrin Ali, co-facilitated the Regional workshop with the GGGI Fiji team, with the In-country coordinators and consultant trainers, of other three countries joining in virtually.
The Korean Ambassador H.E Cho Shin-hee, officials from the KOICA Team, the Regional Head of GGGI – Mr Daniel Munoz-Smith and the GGGI project team, , including other invited guests were in attendance. Also connected virtually, were in-country project coordinators, training module development consultants, consultant trainers in addition to officials and respective country local government reps, involved in the verification of the community training findings.
2021 project path involves finalizing these drafts of training modules and proceeding with actual community training on Renewable Energy General Principles, Energy Efficiency Basics, Green Business Basics, Inclusive Development, Renewable Energy Module, Solar in the community, Pico hydro in the community, Solar Operations & Maintenance basics, Pico hydro Operations & Maintenance basics, Renewable Energy Financial management.