Samoa needs about $100 million more in capital costs to reach its goal of getting 70% of the energy it needs from renewable sources by 2030.
Afamasaga Victor Elia, the Chief Engineer of the Electric Power Corporation, says this is true. He also says that this will mean that consumers will pay less for electricity by the target year.
At the start of Samoa Energy Week this week, Afamasaga said that this would give the energy sector more chances to reach these goals.
Going further, if we genuinely want to achieve 70 per cent renewable energy, we are looking at an additional USD$100 million in capital costs to build all these projects,” he said.
But the Independent Power Providers (IPP) legal agreement says that the private sector and investors will pay for these costs. So, when we sign these IPPs, which usually happens in 20 to 30 years, these investors can make up the money they’ve already spent on building the infrastructure and give the Samoan people cheap electricity simultaneously.
Afamasaga said that more power would be needed in the next five years to meet demand. Right now, the EPC system has a peak value of 30 megawatts, but that number will keep going up as time goes on.
As demand increases, so does the amount of power that needs to be made. So, we’re trying to get to 70% by 2030, but we don’t know what the peak demand will be in the next five years, so it’s a work in progress,” he said.
Under the theme “Sustainable Energy Transition Enhanced,” the Samoa Energy sector is hosting regional energy experts and champions to share ideas and knowledge about how to make a successful energy transition for the good of Samoa.
Afamasaga said that EPC is optimistic because some willing donors and investors want to help Samoa build up its power industry for less money.
This will be accomplished by establishing legal agreements with IPPs, and the exchange will provide IPPs with evidence of Samoa’s renewable energy targets.
EPC saw a massive change in the deployment and use of Renewable Energy Technologies in Samoa, and the country will be able to get 70% of its electricity from renewable energy.
Most of Samoa’s electricity comes from diesel, hydroelectric, and solar power plants, especially for the primary grid. Only a tiny amount comes from wind energy and biomass resources.