Palau, 29th November, 2021 – The SPC’s PCREEE in collaboration with the Palau Public Utilities Corporation (PPUC), the International Solar Alliance (ISA) and the National Institute of Solar Energy of France (INES) conducted a 3-day training on Renewable Energy Mini- Grids at the Palau Public Utilities Corporation’s Conference room, Koror, Palau. The purpose of the training was to strengthen the local technical capacity in Palau to effectively design, install, monitor and maintain renewable energy mini-grid systems. A total of 28 male and female officials from the PPUC, 3G Solar Tech, SOSTSI, PCC, Palau Energy Administration participated in the training programme to enhance their skills in mini-grid systems.

The training is part of the technical assistance that PCREEE offers to its member countries. The content focusses on fundamentals of renewable energy mini-grid, design, installation and monitoring. The training was also to empower PPUC to utilise their local RE expertise to facilitate and lead discussions on mini-grid and to identify areas for further assistance.
The training was opened by Chief Executive Officer of the PPUC, Mr Frank Kyota. “It is crucial for Palau to meet its national energy target of 45% renewable energy by 2025. As such, exploration of alternative resources to meet our target while reducing carbon footprint is crucial,” said Mr Kyota. He also acknowledged the support of the PCREEE in providing the platform to allow local energy experts to share experiences and insights on how to improve access to renewable energy and the transition to clean energy in Palau.

Addressing the participants through video message, PCREEE Manager, Mr. Solomone Fifita, said “There are increasing number of mini-grid systems installed throughout the Pacific region as governments and power utilities recognize the crucial role of mini-grid systems in unlocking the development opportunities in the remote and rural communities.”. In supporting Palau with the training, Mr. Fifita highlighted the benefits of the training to enhance design, operation and maintenance of the mini-grid systems so as to be more resilient and to build back stronger from natural disasters and to assist in fighting against the COVID pandemic.

The training was facilitated in country by PPUC Renewable Energy Manager, Mr Kennard Sugiyama. Throughout the 3-day training, key issues and concerns were raised by PPUC technicians, contractors and participants relating to mini-grid systems designs, types of batteries, type of cables, battery disposals, grid fault, lack of certification of PV modules to meet international standards and the affordability of PV and batteries for consumers. Due to covid restrictions, one of the highlights of the training was the inclusion of a virtual site visit to the

PPUC project site at Kayangel island, where PPUC showcasing the operations of the PPUC solar mini-grid on the island.

The worksop was concluded with a closing remark from Manager of the PCREEE thanking the participants and PPUC for their support and highlighting that the workshop has been conducted efficiently, in close collaboration with the partners, promoting self-reliance on local expertise and was conducted cost-effectively. The PCREEE looks forward to supporting investments in Palau’s energy sector through a matchmaking platform such as an investment forum to promote investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

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