Clinton Climate Initiative, Rocky Mountain Institute-Carbon War Room join the IRENA SIDS Lighthouses Initiative
NEW YORK – Two US-based organizations joined the International Renewable Energy Agency’s (IRENA) Lighthouses initiative today to help island nations accelerate the deployment of renewable energy and transition away from fossil fuels. The Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI), an initiative of the Clinton Foundation, and the Rocky Mountain Institute-Carbon War Room (RMI-CWR), through their island partnership, will jointly work to achieve Small Island Developing States (SIDS) Lighthouses Initiative objectives and explore opportunities for coordinated assistance to SIDS with other partners of the initiative.
“Renewable energy can have a transformational impact on the economic and social wellbeing of island nations, and provide an affordable pathway for island economies to leapfrog the dominant energy paradigm and move towards a sustainable energy future,” said IRENA Director of Innovation and Technology, Dolf Gielen. “Action-based partnerships like the SIDS Lighthouses Initiative can help overcome some of the development challenges needed to spur renewable energy deployment on islands. As such, we welcome the valuable addition of the Rocky Mountain Institute-Carbon War Room and the Clinton Climate Initiative to this growing coalition,” added Mr. Gielen.
The SIDS Lighthouses initiative, launched at the 2014 UN Climate Summit in New York, provides a framework for action for SIDS and partners to move away from a piecemeal approach towards a more structured, holistic and sustainable approach to transform island energy systems. Through partnerships and focused cooperation, the Lighthouses Initiative aims to mobilize funding and political will to advance renewable energy deployment in island settings around the world.
“Island nations contribute the least to climate change yet face the greatest impact of its consequences. Through IRENA’s Lighthouse Initiative, CCI and RMI-CWR can work across all of our island partners to strengthen resiliency to climate change,” said Dymphna van der Lans, CEO of CCI. “We will continue to target areas where transitions to renewable energy and greater energy efficiency is needed, and together work toward finding lasting, sustainable solutions for the energy needs of these island nations."
CCI and RMI-CWR are currently working on their joint Caribbean Energy Transition initiative (under the banners of the Ten Island Challenge and Resilient Communities Program, respectively).
CCI’s Resilient Communities Program, which evolved from CCI’s Islands Diesel Replacement Program, has partnered with governments of 25 island nations across three continents. Over the past two years, CCI has prepared over 20 renewable energy projects across nine island countries. This work is made possible through grants from the Norwegian Government.
“We believe that our recent partnership with Clinton Climate Initiative and now IRENA will allow us to deploy greater effort and resources, more efficiently, and move Islands to a point of unstoppable momentum on renewable energy,’ said Jules Kortenhorst, CEO, Rocky Mountain Institute.
Rocky Mountain Institute and Carbon War Room’s Ten Island Challenge includes seven Caribbean nations - Aruba, Belize, Grenada, San Andres and Providencia (Colombia), St. Lucia, Turks & Caicos, and the Bahamas - working to accelerate the transition of Caribbean island economies from a heavy dependence on fossil fuels to renewable resources. The Ten Island Challenge is made possible through the generosity of the Dutch Postcode Lottery and other donors.
CCI, RMI and CWR will join existing Lighthouse Initiative partners: Antigua & Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Cape Verde, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Grenada, Guyana, Kiribati, Maldives, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Other non-SIDS development partners include ENEL, European Union, France, Germany, Indian Ocean Commission, IRENA, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, SE4ALL, UNDP, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, World Bank Group.