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Seychelles' President calls on international community to back transformative energy projects in SIDS

Victoria, Seychelles | May 29, 2024, Wednesday @ 14:01 in National » GENERAL | By: Alisa Uzice Edited by: Betymie Bonnelame | Views: 2705
Seychelles' President calls on international community to back transformative energy projects in SIDS

The Seychelles' delegation at the SIDS4 conference. (State House)

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The President of Seychelles, Wavel Ramkalawan, has urged all stakeholders to support the Global Ocean Energy Alliance (GLOEA) and recognise the critical role of innovative financing in securing a sustainable future for small island developing states (SIDS) at a side event of the 4th International Conference on Small Island Developing States.

The SIDS DOCK event in Antigua and Barbuda was to address the importance of sustainable ocean energy as a nature-based solution. SIDS DOCK is an initiative among member countries of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) to help SIDS transform their energy sectors and address adaptation to climate change.

In his keynote address, Ramkalawan said, "We face a monumental challenge. Our Islands are burdened with outdated, inefficient diesel generators. We urgently need to replace ten thousand megawatts of ageing baseload diesel fuel electricity generation systems that power our country's hospitals, schools, and critical infrastructure, part of the transition that we talk about so much these days."

He highlighted several key projects being developed in other SIDS that could also be implemented elsewhere. One such project is the first OTEC floating platform in Sao Tome to deliver 10 megawatts of baseload power. The project is in its design phase and needs an investment of $50 million to $60 million to become the first commercial-scale renewable energy power plant solely running on the ocean.   

Ramkalawan said such innovative projects are important for SIDS and can be implemented in Seychelles.

"We urgently call for support from the international financing community including development banks and climate funds to back these transformative projects. Without your support, our efforts to prevent an energy crisis and promote sustainable growth may falter leaving our younger generations at risk and prosperity simply out of reach," he stressed.

After the event, Ramkalawan told SNA that so far the conference is going well and added that even if all these discussions are happening it is important for the SIDS to present a unified front to the rest of the world and work together.

"For example in COP28 where there wasn't a unified statement from SIDS. Now, we will be going into the next COP, I am expecting that through this conference, all the SIDS are unified. This will make it much easier to bring forward topics like the MVI and the Loss and Damage Fund," he said.

After the SIDS4 conference, the President of Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, will attend the 2024 Korea-Africa Summit in Seoul, from June 2 to 6.

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Tags: Global Ocean Energy Alliance, SIDS DOCK, floating platform

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