EU strengthens cooperation with Pacific countries on renewables and climate action

The EU Commission on Tuesday (April, 22) announced a joint mission with New Zealand to support renewable energy development and climate action in Pacific countries. According to official release, European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, and New Zealand Foreign Minister will visit Samoa, Tuvalu, Kiribati and the Cook Islands on 23-27 April, focusing on renewable energy and energy efficiency projects co-financed by New Zealand and the EU. In March 2013 the EU and New Zealand signed a partnership to help Pacific countries achieving 50 percent of their electricity from renewable sources, earmarking around €400 million for energy projects in the area.

In February 2014 the EU also signed a €35.5 million agreement with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. According to a joint statement, the programme, named Adapting to Climate Change and Sustainable Energy, aims to create or strengthen expertise on climate change adaptation and sustainable energy in 15 Pacific countries (Cook Islands, East-Timor, Fiji, Kiribati, , Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu), reduce fossil fuels dependency and improve communities’ adaptive capacity to cope with climate change impacts.