Solar-to-grid for Ebeye

KAJUR utility workers got together with MEC General Manager Jack Chong Gum and Joint Utilities Board Chairman Charles Stinnett (center, back) and RMI Deputy Chief Secretary Abacca Anjain-Maddison (left) for the JICA solar groundbreaking on Ebeye last week. Photo: Hilary Hosia.

The long-awaited Solar Electricity Generation System on Ebeye has finally launched installation following a groundbreaking ceremony at the Ebeye Power Plant last Wednesday.
The system is the brainchild of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the RMI National Energy Office under the Office of Environment.

The solar system will reduce power costs $150,000 in fuel cost each year for the island of Ebeye as the system would feed 600 kilowatt hours daily into the grid — about a quarter of Ebeye’s current energy consumption.

Kwajalein parliament member David Paul calls the initiative an ongoing migration from fossil fuel to renewable energy.

A declaration of emergency on energy by the national government in 2008 sparked the rise of the project, Minister of Education, Sports and Training Kitlang Kabua said in her remarks.

“JICA conducted the Development Program Research Project on the formulation of Self Sufficient Energy Supply in 2013-2015, which suggested that the installation of the photovoltaic power generation system in Ebeye is an effective way to promote and increase the rate of renewable energy and get a stable energy supply,” JICA Resident Representative Shumon Yoshiara said.

Joint Utilities Board Chairman Charles Stinnett and Marshalls Energy Company General Manager Jack Chong Gum were among VIP delegates in the event.

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