3 major challenges in PNG’s energy sector

Papua New Guinea’s energy sector is faced with three major challenges.

Minister for Communication, Technology and Energy, Sam Basil, outlined these three challenges at the recent 2nd Petroleum and Energy Summit in Port Moresby.

Minister Basil said the first major challenge is household energy access nationwide, which has been outstanding for over five decades.

The second is sufficiency of energy for industrialization, which is needed to modernise Papua New Guinea while the third is the importance of renewable energy to address the global crosscutting issue of climate change.

Basil further reiterated that the National Energy Policy 2018-2028, which is already approved by the NEC, will address these three challenges.

He said he will be submitting the policy in the October session of Parliament along with the National Energy Authority Bill, which is to legislate, institutionalise and regulate the policy.

“The policy is in line with the Vision 2050, PNG Sustainable Development Plan and the Alotau Accord l & II as outlined in the 100-day plan.”

He clarified that the main focus of the energy policy is renewable energy to mitigate climate change, but it does not remove the ongoing dependence on fossil fuel.

“All renewable projects will be required to include climate change considerations to comply with international obligations.

“The focus on household energy is vital not just for lighting up homes but also for cottage industries involving and empowering women.

“The third focus of the policy addresses the need for energy for industrialisation.”

He said the key focus areas include access, reliability and affordability of energy in the country.

Freddy Mou