The Northern Cook Islands and Tuvalu have been largely reliant on diesel generators to generate electricity, often limited to only 4 hours a day (2 hours in the morning and evening) due to the cost and availability of diesel. The challenge was to design and build a reliable solar photovoltaic (PV) generation plant that could supply electricity to these remote islands 24/7.The extreme isolation of some of the islands proved difficult, with the need to transport over 10,000 tonnes of equipment to site. The weather provided the final and unexpected challenge with Cyclone Pam destroying many of the reef passages that were needed to gain access to these remote islands.
Vector Powersmart’s expertise in mini-grid solar generation projects in the Pacific Islands proved critical to the success of this project across the whole engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) process. To complete the project, we worked closely with MFAT and the Government of Tuvalu to open the reef passages in a timely manner.
The Northern Cook Islands and Tuvalu now enjoy daily reliable power. This new renewable electricity supply delivers many benefits for the island inhabitants. Fish can be refrigerated prior to export, medicines can be stored and students are now able to access the internet.
Winner best solar PV with storage 2015 - SEANZ