The Green Climate Fund (GCF) has approved US$86 million financing for the Tina River hydroelectric power project, located in the Solomon Islands.
Of the GCF funding, US$70 million is a low-interest loan towards the cost of building the hydro power facility, while US$16 million is grant contribution for the construction of the key access road that will link the power house and the hydropower facility to the capital city Honiara.
The project is expected to have an installed capacity of 20MW and will include a Roller Compacted Concrete (RCC) dam of approximately 50m height; a 3.3km headrace tunnel of approximately 3m diameter and a Power house with 4 x 5MW Francis turbines. Ancillary works will include a transmission line of approximately 22 kilometres length.
Tina River Hydro is planned as Solomon Islands’ first large-scale sustainable energy project, and will lead national efforts to diversify electricity generation in favor of clean, renewable sources such as hydro and solar power. The project has the potential to more than double the country’s annual greenhouse gas reduction target, and has the largest greenhouse gas reduction potential of any planned energy project in Solomon Islands.
The Green Climate Fund is one of the key bodies set up under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to help countries adapt to, or meet their national targets to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Their support is linked to the Tina River Hydro project’s aims of providing lower cost, clean renewable water-generated energy to Solomon Islanders to help reduce – and eventually replace – the country’s almost sole reliance on expensive imported diesel oil.
The Green Climate Fund is now the second donor to announce its funding approval for Tina River Hydro, following a US$15 million commitment from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in early January this year.
Other institutions and governments that have indicated funding support for Tina River Hydro include the Government of Australia, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank Group, and the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) of the Government of Korea.
All funding support for the project is expected to be finalized by August 2017.