Government officials and port representatives from Samoa, Solomon Islands, and Tonga agreed to focus on the implementation of quality, energy, and environmental management for port operations in the Pacific as the guiding principles of their work in support of the Pacific Community’s (SPC) Green Pacific Port initiative.
The 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.
The Green Pacific Port initiative aims 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.
Tonga and Solomon Islands in piloting this initiative demonstrated strong leadership and successful strategies through the positive results achieved in the past few months.
The Solomon Islands Port Authority (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.
The SIPA Chief Executive Officer, Eranda Kotelawala, highlighted 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. He added that “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.”
The Risk and Compliance Manager, ‘Etikeni Samani, reiterated the Ports Authority Tonga’s (PAT) vision and long-term strategy for an efficient, productive and safe Port of Nuku’alofa that is supported by the Green Pacific Port initiative. He further added that “with the Green Pacific Port approach, we have initiated major changes towards quality, energy and environmental management to better integrate the Port of Nuku’alofa in our beautiful environment to a more commercially attractive, resilient and low-carbon Port in the future for Tonga.”
The meeting participants shared practises, successes and challenges to progress the initiative and achieve targets. They agreed to use their individual experiences in a community of practises and work together with SPC to adopt a Green Pacific Port recognition framework.
“The Green Pacific Port initiative demonstrates our capacity in the Pacific region to involve all development sectors in contributing to the regional Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific and particularly to its Goal 2: Low-carbon development. SPC will continue to develop innovative proposals to make low-carbon development in the Pacific a reality”, said Thierry Nervale SPC’s Deputy Director Oceans and Maritime.
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