Tuvalu Vows to Use Only Renewable Energy By 2020

Tuvalu, a Polynesian island nation halfway between Hawaii and Australia, declared on Sunday that it would shift it economy to 100 percent renewable energy by 2020.

Tuvalu has already installed a 40 kilowatt solar energy System with the aid of Kansai Electric Power Company and Tokyo Electric Power Company. The Tuvalu government wants to expand the $410,000 solar project to 60 kilowatts later this year by adding a $800,000, 46 kilowatt solar energy system at a secondary school. The Tuvalu government estimates it would cost more than $20 million to power the country on solar and wind energy.

“We thank those who are helping Tuvalu reduce its carbon footprint as it will strengthen our voice in those international negotiations,” Public Utilities and Industries Minister Kausea Natano said in a statement. “And we look forward to the day when our nation offers an example to all — powered entirely by natural resources such as the sun and the wind.”

Tuvalu consists of four reef islands and five atolls, and is ten square miles (16 kilometers). Its highest point above sea level is 15 feet (4.5 meters), but most of Tuvalu is less than a yard above sea level. It is a country whose annual carbon dioxide emissions are only 0.4 ton per inhabitant, compared to an American’s 20 per ton. By committing to using only renewable energy by 2020, Tuvalu sends a powerful message to G8 countries. 

“In a sense, they are paving the way for medium and larger economies which have to move if we are going combat climate change,” said Nick Nuttal, spokesman for the United Nations Environment Programme. “These smaller economies are out to prove you can do it, and do it faster than some people previously thought.”

“It is a message to the world about the urgent need to promote sustainable energy development and reduce greenhouse gas emissions on a massive scale,” said Johane Meagher, executive director of the e8, a group of G8 utility companies. 

“The plight of Tuvalu versus the rising tide vividly represents the worst early consequence of climate change,” said Takao Shiraishi, general manager of the Kansai Electric Power Co. “For Tuvalu, after 3,000 years of history, the success of U.N. climate talks in Copenhagen this December may well be a matter of national survival.”


LMj Sunshine

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LMj Sunshine

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LMj Sunshine

Thank you.

LMj Sunshine

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Reiner S.
Reiner S.7 years ago

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John H.
John H.7 years ago

In appreciation of the support Tuvalu gives to the Japanese whaling fleet that annually slaughters thousands of Whales in our Southern Oceans and the impact of this illegal activity on endangered species, I find the attitude of those who's culture is interwoven with the great migration a millennia ago and was supposedly guided to the paradise by these great mammals that it once was, now with the courtesy of the New Zealand government have the ability to support the extinction of this great species ( Tuvalu is a NZ dependency)

Tuvalu is supporting the JARPA II so called research programme that annually sees the destruction of whales under the guise of so called research, with banana republics like Tuvalu supporting this great evil our entire planet is a risk.

Tuvalu are one of those nations that support fully article 8 and as Japan has now killed 6,800 Minkie whales since 1987 and enough is enough.

This is grandstanding at its best by Japan, a mere gesture a token drop in the bucket that will make little difference, a feeble attempt by Japan to make us feel good, a gesture to lull us all into thinking they are the good guy's

Well I am NOT impressed

Koo J.
greenplanet e.7 years ago

Good on Tuvalu - but they are already one of the lowest emitters.

Poor Tuvalu is suffering from the emissions of others, eg of the G8 countries, through rising sea levels. Not fair on Tuvalu, who are actually pulling their weight in cutting emissions.

Carrie Fundarek
Carrie Fundarek7 years ago

I think that we all should do the same!

Madeleine L.
Madeleine L.7 years ago

They can always recycle all of their sewage into methane gas which can then be used to produce electricity, power cars, etc. etc. etc.. Why is no one looking at this obvious and elegant solution to many problems: energy production, lowering of pollution and contamination, super clean burning, final product bacteria free fertilizer.....

Howard Doughty
Howard Doughty7 years ago

As inspirational as this may be, it is (literally) a drop in the ocean. Doing good must continue to prevail over feeling good.