RPC Signs Solar Power Contract in PNG

RPC Signs Solar Power Contract in PNG

Rainbow Power Company Ltd (RPC) is pleased to announce the signing of a major contract with Western Power in Papua New Guinea. Under the contract RPC will provide consultancy, training services and solar equipment over the next 12 months.

This project will provide access to electricity to 49 villages located at the mouth of Fly River in Western Province, Papua New Guinea. A total of 3400 houses and with a population of 33 887 will benefit from this exciting project.

Each village will be serviced with three phase solar/ battery / inverter systems that will be distributed via village Mini Grids. Each system will be capable of delivering 13.8 kW to the village for lighting, television, phone charging and a community cool room. The solar arrays range between 11 and 22 kW in capacity. The total capacity of 650 kW will be provided by 3250 Trina solar panels. Some 11,000 kWh of German made sealed batteries will provide storage and German made SMA inverter technology has been selected to generate the 240/ 415 volt power. RPC has chosen the highest quality equipment for this project as reliability is a key criteria in remote areas.

A further 275 Solar Home Systems will be provided to those houses which are too remote to be connected to the 42 Mini Grid Systems. These Home Systems will be powered by a 90 watt solar panel which will provide power for 3 Sundaya LED lights, a stereo and mobile phone charging.

RPC is excited to see the introduction of solar power to a very remote area of Papua New Guinea. Currently, only 20% of the population has access to electricity, mainly sourced through diesel generators running for 6 hours a day. Western Power has a target of providing access to electricity to 80% of the population by 2020. Due to the remote location of the villages, solar is the most cost effective solution to meet this ambitious target.

The local villages will benefit from having clean electric lighting after years of using kerosene lanterns. Kerosene lamps cause local and indoor air pollution - a nasty mix of particulates, carbon monoxide and carcinogenic gases. (World Health Organisation) The provision of electric lighting also promotes the education for school children and small income generation from home crafts etc.

Smoke from kerosene lamps is responsible for respiratory infections, lung and throat cancers, serious eye infections, cataracts as well as low birth weights. Acute respiratory infections like influenza and pneumonia kill nearly 2 million children in developing nations each year, more than the annual number of all deaths at all ages from all causes in the European Union. (SELF Newsletter, 2002) The World Bank estimates that 780 million women and children breathing kerosene fumes inhale the equivalent of smoke from 2 packs of cigarettes a day. Shockingly, two-thirds of adult female lung-cancer victims in developing nations are non-smokers. (SELF Newsletter, 2002)

Company Director, Paul O'Reilly said 'RPC is pleased that the experience we have gained in alternative technologies is now being exported to developing countries around the world. This project will provide increased employment for local residents in Nimbin as well as an exciting opportunity to work in Papua New Guinea. RPC would like to thank the local community for their support over the past 25 years. As a token of our appreciation we will be instituting a Community Care Fund to assist local projects undertaken by non profit organisations. Guidelines will be released in coming weeks'.

For further information, contact Paul O'Reilly 02-6689-1430

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