Australian High Commissioner, Jon Philp, announced the commencement of the projects, which will be funded by grants from the Pawarim Komuniti Off-grid Electrification Program – an initiative of the PNG-Australia Partnership.
“We are delighted to announce the first three Pawarim Komuniti projects. Combined, these projects will provide access to solar lighting, cooking and charging facilities to thousands of people in rural and remote communities that are not served by the national electricity grid,” said Philp.
“Australia is committed to increasing access to energy in rural and remote communities – to support livelihoods, create economic opportunities and enhance safety and wellbeing.”
Through Pawarim Komuniti, grant funding is available to incentivise innovative projects that expand access to off-grid electrification in rural and remote areas.
The projects, implemented in partnership with the private sector and civil society, will provide rural households, community facilities and businesses with reliable and affordable access to clean energy.
The first projects that have been announced are:
- Kamapim Pawa: Delivery partners Tenkile Conservation Alliance and Solar Solutions PNG Ltd will install household solar lights and streetlights in the Torricelli Mountain Range in West Sepik Province to reduce the use of inefficient lighting and contribute to ongoing conservation efforts.
- Light for Learning: Delivery partner Kokoda Track Foundation will install solar home systems in households, schools, aid posts, community centres and churches in 44 villages in Northern and Western provinces, with a focus on supporting student learning.
- Lighting Up Water, Sanitation and Hygiene: Delivery partner Environmental Health Development Agency will install solar street lighting systems and indoor lighting at community wash stations and kitchen taps in remote parts of Morobe Province. These will enhance health and safety, especially for women and girls.
The PGK70 million Pawarim Komuniti program is part of Australia’s commitment under the PNG Electrification Partnership to help PNG meet its electrification targets.