Generating sustainable energy from wind for the island nation

Small island nations like New Caledonia are often described as ‘the canary in the coal mine’ of climate change, with many already experiencing the impact of rising tides and damaging storms. These wind farms use world class technology to provide New Caledonia with sustainable energy to combat climate change whilst also addressing various social issues.

The context

Islands of the Pacific Ocean like New Caledonia face serious environmental and socioeconomic pressures that are exacerbated by climate change. Pacific Island nations are already severely affected by extreme weather and climate variability, and their inhabitants are amongst the world’s most vulnerable communities to the growing effects of climate change. Yet in New Caledonia, 80 percent of energy demands are met by fossil fuel power plants.

The project

Prony Wind Power involves six wind farms located at two different sites on the island of New Caledonia that supply electricity to the local grid. The Kafeate and Prony sites consist of 116 wind turbines with a total capacity of 31 MW, with an estimated yearly production of 40 GWh of emissions-free, renewable electricity.

The benefits

By displacing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel power plants with renewable electricity, Prony Wind Power contributes to global climate action. The project has also boosted local economies, creating employment in both the construction and operational phases and spreading technological know-how. Prony’s success is a tribute the viability and value of sustainable development in small island nations, promoting climate awareness and action, and ultimately increasing climate resilience in the Pacific Island region.

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