Denarau Marina powered with solar
By RACHNA LAL, JYOTI PRATIBHA
and ELLEN STOLZ
Port Denarau Marina now has the largest solar system installed for a marina anywhere in the world.
This is thanks to Sunergise, the new Pacific-wide renewable energy company.
The Attorney-General and Minister for Tourism, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, yesterday officially inaugurated the installation of the solar system.
The system is also Fiji’s largest on-grid commercial solar power generator.
The 122 Kilo Watt system weathered Cyclone Evan intact and is currently meeting its daily power requirements thanks to Nadi’s abundance of sunshine hours.
Director, Ajay Raniga, said: “Our mission is to use a commercial model to bring clean energy to the people of Fiji and other Pacific nations.
“In the process we help to create energy independence and protection from rising oil prices,” he said.
Mr Sayed-Khaiyum agreeing with Mr Raniga said Fiji spends approximately a billion dollars a year importing fossil fuels into Fiji which is a huge drain on our foreign reserves.
“But at the same time we need to move to efficient and cleaner energy and of course hopefully cheaper energy too,” he said.
“This will have a huge impact on our ability to carry out business and impact on the everyday lives of ordinary Fijians.”
Tourism industry usage
Mr Sayed-Khaiyum believes our tourism industry for a very long time perhaps has in a way neglected the usage of solar energy.
“Perhaps other renewable energy that can be utilised in the future,” he said.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for us to be able to encourage the tourism industry to take it upon themselves to participate in it because there’s a dimension to it too.”
The managing director of Port Denarau Marina, Nigel Skeggs, said they recognise the importance of protecting the marine and natural environment in a way that makes good business sense.
“The Sunergise proposal offered us the opportunity to do exactly that,” he said.
Work has recently been completed on a second smaller installation at the Denarau Golf & Racquet Club on Denarau Island.
Sunergise confirms it has several more in the pipeline, as a growing number of Fijian businesses see value in its offering.
Sunergise worked with a team of international and local experts to roll out the Port Denarau Marina and Starwood installations, deploying world-class panels, inverters and remote monitoring technology.