24 Jul 2006

Marshall Islands Energy Company welcomes funding for solar power systems

2:26 pm on 24 July 2006

The Marshall Islands Energy Company says work will begin immediately if funding from Taiwan is approved by the cabinet for the expansion of a solar power system for the outer islands.

The company's project manager, Steve Wakefield, says they've been installing solar power systems for individual homes on remote atolls for the last 18 months and 300 houses can now operate with some electricity.

Taiwan has offered 3 million U.S. dollars to continue the project and help with technical expertise.

Mr Wakefield is welcoming the extra funding but says there are 1700 houses still to be supplied with the systems.

"Well, the funding from Taiwan will probably only provide us with about 400 home systems so we're continually looking for some further funding to do the rest of the system."

Steve Wakefield says the individual solar power units are capable of running lights, a small washing machine, or even a small television set.