The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is increasing its financial aid to support the Maldives in securing its energy supply, modernise the grid, and decarbonise its generation network.
The ADB has approved a $7.74 million concessional loan and a $2.73 million project grant to scale up the ongoing project, Preparing Outer Islands for Sustainable Energy Development (POISED).
The project is designed to transform existing diesel-based grids into renewable-energy-based hybrid systems across 160 outer islands in Maldives.
In August, ADB approved a $151.13 million loan to help the government of Maldives to develop a waste-to-energy plant.
ADB’s additional financing will expand renewable-based hybrid systems, distribution grid upgrades, energy management systems, and supervisory control and data acquisition systems on an additional 12 outer islands.
The funding will be utilised by the Ministry of Environment, as well as electricity utilities State Electricity Company Limited and FENAKA Corporation Limited.
Maldives will also install solar-photovoltaic-based ice-making machines in four outer islands to support fisheries, develop and introduce a climate- and disaster-resilient electricity distribution system in one outer island, and pilot test a solar-photovoltaic-battery-operated ferry for transportation.
Through the POISED project, Maldives has to date replaced inefficient diesel-based power generation grids and installed more than 9.5MW of solar photovoltaic capacity, 5.6MWh of battery storage, 11.6MW of energy efficient diesel generators, and its associated investments in 70 outer islands.
ADB senior energy specialist for South Asia Jaimes Kolantharaj, said: “Maldives’ geography, with its scattered islands and atolls, make generation and distribution of electricity very challenging and expensive. It is also vulnerable to climate and disaster risks and has been heavily dependent on diesel.
“This assistance reaffirms ADB’s ongoing commitment to develop and finance climate- and disaster-resilience, as well as sustainable infrastructure in South Asia.”