November 19, 2023 – Mana Pacific is proud to announce that today they are joining forces with the Lau Provincial Council to initiate the Mini-Grids Renewable Solar Electricity Project – Rarama Vou Kei Lau (“A New Dawn for Lau”). The term “Rarama Vou” can be translated to mean “New Light” or “New Dawn,” symbolizing the introduction of clean energy solutions to provide sustainable and affordable electricity to the remote, off-grid communities in the Lau Group.
The partnership was sealed through the official signing of the MOU in a ceremony attended by the Vuanirewa clan of the Lau Islands Group in Fiji on November 19th, 2023. It is an honor for Mana Pacific to collaborate with the Lau Group communities. Together, they are excited to introduce resilient renewable energy solutions that will replace the existing diesel generation and establish off-grid renewable energy independence.
Due to the remote and dispersed nature of the Lau Group archipelago, the 30 inhabited islands rely on imported diesel fuel, which is inefficient, expensive, and polluting. While the two main islands in Fiji, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, are grid-connected, the Lau Group islands are entirely off-grid. This makes it so the emissions generated from its diesel power plants do not count towards the utility’s energy make-up and will not be included in their 100% renewable energy generation goal.
Therefore, it is up to local governments like the Lau Provincial Council to partner with social impact companies like Mana Pacific to take on the renewable development of the Lau Group. The MOU signing with the Lau Provincial Council is a pivotal partnership in terms of securing local governmental support and establishing an equal public-private partnership.
Each province in Fiji is governed by a provincial council that may pass bylaws and impose local taxes, which are overseen by a national government branch. The executive head of each provincial council is known as the Roko Tui, which often (but not always) coincides with the high (or “Paramount”) chief of the region’s predominant clan.
"We are committed to building a Lau Province that our future generations will be proud of. Through this project, we strive to create a better quality of life for our communities and contribute to the sustainable development of Lau."
-Roko Tui Lau Jioji Kalounivalu
In their development work, Mana Pacific prioritizes working side-by-side with motivated local partners to create a community-driven development process rather than initiating top-down project efforts. The Vuanirewa clan’s participation in the signing ceremony demonstrates the community’s active involvement and support for these mini-grids in the Lau Group.
In executing this vision outlined in the MOU, Mana Pacific will support the financing, development, construction, and maintenance of the solar mini-grids. Their goal as a development partner is to support the local community and government in transforming the Lau Group and bringing about the “Rarama Vou” – a brighter, more affordable, sustainable, and energy independent reality.