Richard Butler | Exclusive Report by Anita Roberts of DAILY POST VU | 29th NOV, 2023

The Minister of Climate Change Adaptation, Ralph Regenvanu, is confident that Vanuatu is on track to meet its target of transitioning into 100% renewable energy in the electricity sector by 2030, seven years from now.

Electricity on Santo, Vanuatu’s biggest island, will be generated fully by renewable energy once the Sarakata Hydropower Project Phase II is completed by 2026 or 2027 while Malekula, the second biggest island, is already being light up through the Brenwei Hydro Power Plant, he said.

“Our big challenge is Port Vila and efforts are now focussed on increasing the battery storage for solar and wind sources as we are embarking on a path of using coconut. If this project works out as expected, we can replace diesel.

“We will be launching the first electric vehicles next year before we can expand further to vessels…There are a lot of greenhouse gases in other areas like the livestock sector which is difficult to deal with,” he said.


Livestock sector is the largest single contributor to Vanuatu’s greenhouse gas emissions, apart from energy and transport. The emissions from the livestock sector are primary methane produced by cattle production.

Vanuatu’s renewable energy is outlined in its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). All countries have pledged to take action to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement in their NDCs, however rich economies like Australia and USA are still spewing more emissions.

Minister Regenvanu will be heading the Vanuatu delegation at the annual United Nations global climate summit, COP28, in Dubai where Vanuatu will be pushing for rich countries to switch away from harmful fossil fuels to environment friendly alternatives like renewable. He will be leaving the country this week while some of the delegates are already in Dubai.

One of Vanuatu’s focus at COP28 is global stocktake and its implications for emissions reduction commitments, including the Loss and Damage Fund.

Accounting for just less than 1% of global emissions, Vanuatu has been a strong advocate for a reduction of emissions that limits the rise in global temperatures. Vanuatu has emerged as a global climate champion for spearheading the resolution to seek an Advisory Opinion from the International Court of Justice on states’ obligations to tackle the climate crisis.