This was revealed by Dr. Zullah Mohommed Asid of SPC and officials from SIPA during a dinner with the Solomon Star over the weekend.
Dr. Asid revealed that the Green Pacific Port initiative is aimed at improving efficiency and resilience of port operations and infrastructure, whilst reducing environmental and carbon footprints. This requires an integrated approach towards quality, energy and environmental management of ports and its operations.
Green Pacific Port discussion took place during a special session of the Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre in the Pacific (MTCC-Pacific) third steering committee meeting chaired by Fiji with members from Pacific island countries and regional partners.
He said Solomon Islands in piloting this initiative demonstrated strong leadership and successful strategies through the positive results achieved in the past few months.
SIPA reported an overall energy savings of 8% amounting to 15 tonnes of greenhouse gas emission reduction and consequently a total of AU$17,000 per month in 2018.
He revealed that his recent visit to Noro will help them see the possibilities to build a solar farm as the source of energy supply to the port there.
Meanwhile, Glen Joshua of SIPA said the initiative will enable ports to save more money and reduce energy consumption from fossil fuel, which is contributing to greenhouse emission.
He added SIPA is fully committed to the project and is working closely with SPC to see the work progressing towards achieving its goals.
“This initiative aligns with the objective of the Solomon Islands Government to reduce heavy reliance on fossil fuel and enhance environmentally friendly development in the country,” he said.
The SIPA Chief Executive Officer Eranda Kotelawala highlighted during a meeting in Fiji last month that SIPA is undertaking new investments in solar power to supply perimeter lighting for the both Honiara and Noro ports and to provide electricity to all refrigerated containers and newly invested yard-handling equipment.
“We have adopted ambitious targets to contribute to country efforts in reducing energy consumption and greenhouse emissions. We have a clear vision of green ports in Solomon Islands and to transform Noro Port into a carbon neutral port by 2030,” he said.
By AATAI JOHN LAUNGI