Suva, Fiji – 18 December – On December 17, the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) welcomed the Kingdom of Tonga as its twenty-ninth Member and fifth country from the Pacific, committing to jointly deliver inclusive, environmentally sustainable economic growth in the country. The membership ceremony was held during GGGI’s Seventh Session of its Assembly and Eleventh Session of its Council on October 31 at its headquarters in Seoul, Korea where a government representative, Ms Emeline Veikoso Laumanu, Energy Efficiency Specialist of the Department of Energy, Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communication (MEIDECC) met with GGGI’s President, Mr. Ban Ki-moon and Director General, Dr. Frank Rijsberman.
GGGI will support Tonga in pursuing a socially inclusive green growth approach that can improve the country’s resilience to climate change and natural disasters while enhancing infrastructure, improving energy security, and reducing dependence on fossil fuels.
“GGGI is looking forward to working with the Government of Tonga to contribute to the goal of reaching 50% renewable electricity by 2020 and strengthening resilience and adaptation to climate change for Tonga’s islands and communities” said Katerina Syngellakis, GGGI Pacific Regional Representative.
Tonga’s membership with GGGI will strengthen existing efforts to transition the country toward a green and sustainable model of development. GGGI’s counterpart Ministry in Tonga will be the Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications (MEIDECC) and GGGI will be working closely with Tonga’s Department of Energy on greenhouse gas emissions reduction opportunities, and with the Department of Climate Change on identifying suitable opportunities for adaptation and resilience as well as cross-cutting projects.
“Tonga is committed to green growth and willing to enable renewable energy (RE) transitions by strengthening policies and management of RE projects and technologies. Allowing maximum RE technologies into Tonga’s electricity grid will reduce tariffs and make Tonga more resilient to climate change” said Dr. Tevita Tukunga, Director of Energy.
The initial work between GGGI and Tonga will focus on areas including renewable energy for reliable, affordable and inclusive energy services, energy efficiency for buildings and appliances, such as households and businesses, and green towns and villages including transport and waste management.
About the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI)
Based in Seoul, GGGI is an intergovernmental organization that supports developing country governments’ transition to a model of economic growth that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. GGGI delivers programs in 33 partner countries with technical support, capacity building, policy planning & implementation, and by helping to build a pipeline of bankable green investment projects. More on GGGI’s events, projects and publications can be found on www.gggi.org. You can also follow GGGI on Twitter and join us on Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn.
About the Ministry of MEIDECC
The Ministry of MEIDECC was established in 2014 with the Government Departments of: Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications. These Departments make up the portfolio of the Minister responsible for MEIDECC, Hon. Poasi Mataele Tei. The Ministry has a Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Paula Pouvalu Ma’u who is responsible for the general administration and operation of the whole Ministry on a day-to-day basis. The Ministry also has eight Directors who are responsible for the day-to-day operations of their respective Departments.