Key’s NZ$200m pledge to Pacific applauded

The leadership of Tokelau applauds the announcement last night by the New Zealand Prime Minister, John Key, of a $200million pledge towards climate-related support to Pacific nations.

Tokelau’s renewable energy project assisted by New Zealand was a success in the fight against climate change. Over the past six years, New Zealand has played a pro-active role in helping a number of Pacific islands move from reliance on fossil fuels to self-sustaining clean renewable energy.

As part of this drive, New Zealand contributed to Tokelau becoming the first country in the world to be 100% powered by solar energy. The three atolls reduced their reliance on diesel generators, and the money saved was redirected to improve education, health and village projects such as improving sea walls.

The $200million pledge by New Zealand is great news for Tokelau. Officials are now looking to push forward with renewable and climate adaptation initiatives that have been held back through lack of resources.

One of those areas is completing Tokelau’s renewable energy strategy.

“Tokelau has yet to achieve phase 2 and 3 of its renewable energy targets,” said the Ulu o Tokelau, Aliki Faipule Siopili Perez. “If we are able to access some of the $200million for completing our renewable energy targets, this would help Tokelau build more resilience into the sector.
“At the same time, this will allow us to make headway on some of the Sustainable Development Goals in the newly endorsed Agenda2030.”

The other key area Tokelau will look to gain support for from the newly pledged fund is inter-island sea transport: this long-time priority target has not yet been reached through lack of funding.

“The only way to and from Tokelau’s three atolls is via sea transport. Finally getting this sorted will help us at so many developmental levels. On top of that, it will resolve some of our concerns about Tokelau’s mitigation commitment,” said the Ulu o Tokelau. 

“We look forward to discussing these long-term needs with New Zealand officials so we can build resilience in the two sectors.”

For further information contact:
Paula Faiva, Climate Change Programme Manager
Office of the Council for the Ongoing Government of Tokelau, Apia, Samoa
Email: paulafaiva@gmail.com, phone +685 775 8820

see also: http://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/pm-addresses-paris-climate-change-conference