Te Ang Maitoro-Cooling Kiribati and Samoa

Research Project

The research proposes to identify renewable energy opportunities that will strengthen the capacity of communities in Kiribati and Samoa to respond and adapt to disturbances and stresses from the effects of natural disasters and climate change.

The research will:

  1. Undertake a focussed literature review on the role of energy poverty and renewable energy sources in strengthening the capacity of local communities in small island developing countries to achieve sustainable development and better manage the effects of natural disasters and climate change.
  2. Identify local solutions for enhancing community resilience in Kiribati and Samoa to mitigate and manage risks related to natural disasters, climate change and inadequate infrastructure, using participatory methodology.  This field work is intended to go beyond the identification of renewable energy solutions, and explore issues relating to planning preparedness and how governance at the local government level can be enhanced to improve decision making regarding the provision of renewable energy services.
  3. Identify how renewable energy solutions (such as, additional PV systems, wind, micro hydro and OTEC solutions) can enhance resilience in Kiribati and Samoa, including ways of investing in local skills to ensure the maintenance of renewable energy infrastructure.

Project Team

Professor Howden-Chapman, public health specialist in housing and urban development, leader for this project, is responsible for project management, use of frameworks and methodology, and ensuring that all outcomes are delivered within budget.

Dr Tiatia, public health researcher, leader for the Samoa case study will be conducting field work in Samoa examining renewable energy solutions that can enable local communities to become more resilient to disturbances from natural disasters and climate change.

Dr Thompson, public health research, leader for the Kiribati case study will be conducting field work in Kiribati examining renewable energy solutions that can enable local communities to become more resilient to disturbances from natural disasters and climate change. Responsible for undertaking the focussed literature review.

Ian Shearer, engineer and consultant on renewable energy solutions for small rural communities, and coordinating possible community energy solutions in Kiribati and Samoa.

Dr Suzanna Tiapula, Pacific researcher, consultant with expertise in ocean energy technology.

Yung Sung, architect, who with Dr Tiatia has developed different methods for collecting data in the field that will be used for this study.

Dr Antoine Bittar, scientist, Munich Institute of Technology, international consultant to ADB, solar energy expertise, specialist in integrating a wide mix of renewable energy technologies with battery storage systems.

Dr Dianne Sika-Paotonu, Tongan biomedical scientist and immunologist, advising on community health issues.